• Humidity, Temperature and Climate and how they affect your piano

    12 May 2016 | Blog
  • Since time immemorial a piano placed rightfully around the corner of your living room has been a sign of musical intellect. It’s gives the space it occupies character, signifies that the people who live here love music – making it, creating it, playing it and listening to it. Being a vital part of your childhood growing up to romantic evenings spent with a special someone – A Piano isn’t just that! It’s more than that and for all you music lovers out there, it can frustrating when something goes wrong with it, the technical or even mechanical issues with the chords you can handle. But what happens when the physical surroundings such as climate and weather effect it? Primarily your Piano is made of wood, preferably of a type which is superior. However like all woods, humidity and the climate will have its effects on your Piano. Seasonal changes or even regular highs and lows in the weather can have its damaging effects – most notably amongst them are the swelling or expanding of the wood. And in certain extremes it can even cause the wood to crack open. This effects the working of your piano, it goes out of tune, out of shape. Locations such as the seacoast or in a rainy or humid region, in a valley, a house facing hills, or in an area with poor drainage. As well as areas where air exhausts are directed into a room, in a dark room facing north or in a concrete building that's only a few years old.  All of these areas can have excessive moisture and can cause the wood to swell on your piano. Although too much humidity can be an issue, excessive dryness can be an even bigger problem.  If the air becomes too dry the wooden and felt components will shrink on a piano. In extreme cases, the soundboard, joints and other laminated sections may even come apart, even though they have been glued together carefully. Slight distortion of the parts may cause noise, and the tuning pins may work loose, making it difficult to keep the piano in tune.

    So how do you resolve this?

     

    Do's

    • Have a humidity control system installed in the piano - air humidifier will add moisture to the air around it while a dehumidifier will eliminate excess moisture.
    • Get a humidistat - A humidistat will automatically cycle when the relative humidity rises above your preset level (40-50% suggested) and will turn itself off when falling below.
    • On cloudy or rainy days close all windows in the piano room - This will help you avoid excess moisture and temperature changes.
    • Be sure to close the top board each time after playing - Help eliminate too much humidity which will result in dull hammer action and unclear tones.
    • Dust your piano regularly - Dust can dull the hammer action and cause noise.
    • Keep the keyboard clean -  Periodically with a soft, dry cloth and never play the piano with dirty hands.
    • Adopt a schedule of regular service - A regular service (tuning and adjustment) will keep your piano's performance at its peak level. It will also correct "progressive" problems early, before they turn into costly repairs.

    Dont's

    • Avoid spilling and contact with certain materials - Plastic, Vinyl, Alcohol, Cosmetics, Insecticides, any kind of Aerosol and Paint thinner or Petroleum based products.
    • Never use cleaners containing alcohol - The keys will become cracked.
    • Avoid sudden temperature changes - Moisture will condense on the piano strings and other metal parts, causing them to rust.
    • Do not place objects on top of the piano - A heavy object may cause poor tone or noisy vibrations.

    You’ve invested so much time in the art of music, might as well invest a bit more to preserve it as well!

    Calgary Piano Movers

    Calgary Piano Movers has over 24 year experience and has a trusted team of professionals who will safely move your piano from any space to any place. We have moved all types of pianos including uprights, baby grands, grands and concert grands. We also move all brands of pianos including Steinway, Mason & Hamlin, Bosendorfer, Yamaha, Kawai and many more. We understand the value and delicacy of each instrument and we will guarantee the proper care of your piano from  the point of pick up through delivery. Our team will make your move effortless and worry free. To schedule an appointment to move your piano call (403) 805-3427 or fill in our online form.


    Photo Ref: Kārlis Dambrāns cropped and resized