Piano maintenance advice and tips by Nelda Wittig, West Music Piano Consultant.
You may have just made an investment in a piano or you have had one for years. Learn how to properly maintain your piano in the Midwest where temperatures dip and humidy is difficult to keep level. Since 85% of a piano is made of wood, it is important that your piano keeps a consistent humidity level between 40-50%. Just like a living tree that responds to the environment, the wood in your piano will respond to the ever changing environment in your home.
When the humidity inside your home drops below the ideal of 40-50% humidity, you may notice some changes in the piano—some minor; some costly.
Wooden action parts shrink when they become too dry, and they become loose and start to rattle and make noise. This puts early wear on your action and repairs in your future!
Cracks may appear in the soundboard (the heart of a piano), or on the bridges, or in the pin block. Any of these cracks can be a costly fix.
Pitch and tone will fluctuate with the dry environment.
What’s the solution? A humidifier system can be installed in your upright or grand piano and will keep the soundboard area constant. We suggest installing a dual system which will remove excess moisture in the air and will also add moisture if needed. You may want to also purchase a hygrometer to keep in or nearby your piano to have a continuous readout of humidity. Your piano will thank you!
Our experts at West Music are available to install a humidifier system into almost any piano, or answer any you might have about the care of your instrument. Contact your local West Music store for more information.
Learn more about West Music’s piano galleries and services:pianos.westmusic.com