Why Regular Piano Tunings Are Worth It

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Piano tunings may not always be quick or convenient. But, they are necessary if you want to keep your instrument in good health, regardless of whether you play; consider how your piano's value relies on its condition, in case you ever decide to sell.

Regular Piano Tunings Can Prevent Serious Damage

Pianos are complex instruments; if one part performs sub-par, the overall quality of the instrument suffers. Bad tuning can be a symptom of another problem, and out-of-tune strings are probably the most annoying indicators that you are in need of an overall tune-up.

Regular piano tunings can also prevent damage. Correct (and constant) string tension is important to the health of many delicate piano parts – parts which are very expensive to fix. Tunings help these parts work together smoothly, preventing damage to (and from) neighboring pieces.

If your piano has gone two or more years without a tuning, it might require corrective treatments (adding anywhere from $50-$250 to your bill). Here are two common procedures used to fix severely bad tuning:

  • Pitch-Raising is a pre-tuning process that prepares the strings to be tuned. If done incorrectly, this technique can negatively impact the piano’s timbre; sacrifice proper string vibration, and cause a twang or rattle if the strings have interference.​
  • Double-Tuning is when a general, overall tuning is performed before a fine-tuning. The first tuning is crucial because the tuning process itself can cause weak strings to go out-of-tune; starting off with a fine-tuning would be a tremendous waste of time on severely out-of-tune strings.

To prevent this problem in the future, learn how frequently your piano should be tuned based on your specific situation.

The More You Tune Your Piano, The Less You Have To

After a few regular tunings, you’ll notice that the pitch doesn’t stray as easily (or as often) as it did before, even if you skip a tune-up. This will, however, depend on the health and quality of your instrument and the climate of your piano room.

Piano Tuners Can Inform You of Problems

Some issues are undetectable by players, so having a professional look inside your piano on a regular basis can prevent small problems from evolving into major damage.

But, not all piano tuners are piano technicians, and vice versa. If you want your piano looked at in-depth, find a tuner who has been trained to handle piano maintenance.