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What’s the best way to move and store a piano?

What’s the best way to move and store a piano?
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Operations - Store and Insure

Move your keyboard instruments safely

A good piano is a joy, and if you’ve found one you love there may come a time when you need to move it or store it. This might be because you know you will not play it for an extended period – perhaps because during home renovations or because of a change in life circumstances such as ill health or a new baby. Or perhaps you are letting your home while you travel but do not want to give your tenants responsibility for your instrument.

Pianos are complex instruments with hundreds of delicate parts made from different materials, and they were never designed to be mobile. Having said that, some well-regarded pianists do travel with their pianos – although it is more usual for a piano technician to prepare an instrument at the destination to the pianist’s preference. Digital pianos are, perhaps, less of a headache to move, but still require careful handling.

Upright pianos take up less space than grand pianos and might look like they would be easier to move. But they are not well balanced and it is easy to accidentally tip them over if you are inexperienced at piano moving.

Do you need to store your piano?

Pianos thrive on being played and even in the best of storage conditions they do deteriorate if left un-used for a long period. If you are not particularly attached to your piano consider whether it would be better to sell it and put the money aside to buy a new instrument later on.

Get the professionals involved when moving a piano

We’d strongly advise using the services of a specialist piano remover as it is easy to damage an instrument if you don’t know what you are doing. A professional piano remover will dissemble and pack your precious piano and move it safely. There are companies that offer dedicated piano storage, but any reputable storage company will provide a steady environment with no extremes of temperature or humidity.

Watch the wheels on your piano

Many pianos have small wheels so the instrument can be moved away from the wall for spring cleaning. These little steel wheels – or dress castors – are not designed for moving a piano around the house. They can cause damage to floors, so professional movers load a piano on to a dolly.

Bring your piano out of storage

When you’re ready to play again you’ll want to get your piano tuned up. The Pinaoforte Tuners’ Association can help you find a trusted practitioner.

Insurance for storing a piano

You may be wondering if your stored goods are covered under your contents insurance. This depends on your insurance policy, so speak to your home contents insurer before proceeding. Reputable storage companies will make insurance a condition of service, so you will have to insure your possessions – including your piano – in storage one way or another. Storage companies sometimes offer insurance, but it is not always competitively priced. So make sure you get quotations from at least three providers – including Store and Insure, using our simple self-storage insurance form. We limit the value of individual insured goods to under £1,500 – but if your piano is worth more than that, call us up anyway, as we may still be able to help.