are pleased to provide a written valuation of your piano for the
purposes of insurance or for probate. We can advise you of the likely
fee for visiting and carrying out the valuation, which will depend
on travelling distance and whether or not it involves a special
Most pianos require to be tuned every 6 months,
or more often in the case of teachers’ pianos. If a piano
is not being played upon, then tuning should be carried out at
least once a year, to prevent deterioration.
when not in use regularly, a piano will go out of tune at the
same rate, with the pitch slowly lowering - if left for long periods
the resultant low pitch will have caused deterioration to the
instrument and there may be problems in attaining the correct
pitch again. With regular tuning, small adjustments to the action
and other mechanisms can be carried out, helping to ensure that
your piano is maintained in its optimum condition.
Keep pianos well away from radiators or other direct
sources of heat; permanent damage can result within only a few days
of being subjected to such conditions. Try to avoid siting your
piano against an outside wall, where dampness and condensation can
adversely affect it. Avoid also, rooms that have many windows, such
as conservatories, because they are sure to be too hot and dry.
It should be noted that strong sunlight will have a bleaching effect
on the casework, and will lighten the colour of the finish in time.
Centrally heated rooms are generally too dry for
pianos. Older pianos need to be kept at between 50 and 70 % R.H.
(Relative Humidity), with about 60% being ideal. Proper humidity
levels will ensure that no damage occurs to the wooden parts of
your piano as a consequence of low moisture content; tuning stability
will also be improved. The main parts of your piano at risk are
the soundboard and the wrest plank. Both affect tuning stability,
though splits in the soundboard mainly affect the piano’s
tone, whilst splits in the wrest plank can make successful tuning
impossible. To avoid any doubt, your tuner can supply you with an
inexpensive hygrometer that allows you to keep a check on the conditions
in the room.
Most piano owners appreciate the importance of moisture
to prevent wooden parts deteriorating and some owners in the past
have resorted to keeping a jar of water inside the case. Unfortunately,
if there is a real problem with dryness, this resort does not allow
fast enough evaporation to combat the drying effect, thus a purpose-made
piano humidifier is the only sure way to help matters. Of course,
in an ideal environment, the humidity of the whole room would be
controlled, but this is rarely possible unless more expensive solutions
standard type of manufactured piano humidifier appears to be just
a simple cylindrical plastic tube but, in fact, has a special type
of water-absorbent wadding inside that will not leak water and yet
provides evaporation at a fast enough rate to satisfy most household
situations. Your tuner / technician can easily fit one of these
humidifiers inside the upper part of the casework by installing
two retaining brackets for suspending the tube at a proper height
within the instrument. Usually, this installation takes about 20
minutes. We maintain stocks of humidifiers at the workshop and will
be pleased to fit these upon request.
Your piano can be dusted and polished in the same
way as other household furniture, using a spray polish but avoid
polishes that contain silicone as this tends to attract dust. Avoid
applying polish to the keyboard - always use a clean, dry cloth
when dusting the keys. If there is a build-up of dirt and grease
on the keys, wring-out a cloth in some washing-up water containing
a small amount of detergent and use this to remove dirt and grease
from the keys; the cloth should only be slightly damp, else water
will enter between the keys and soak into the wooden stock of the
keys. For keys covered in ivory or celluloid, natural light will
help to maintain their whiteness and prevent yellowing, therefore,
leave the fall (keyboard lid) in its open position as often as possible.