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Moving a Piano Yourself

iStock_000000646260XSmall-1_opt_1_Moving a piano yourself can be an exhaustive and trying experience.  I would strongly suggest hiring a professional since they have the experience and tools necessary to complete the task safely and efficiently. Piano are extremely heavy so moving a piano yourself could put you at risk of injury. However if you cannot afford movers and are set on doing it yourself then we have a list of steps to make it easier.

  • Ask any friends or relatives to see if they can give you a hand. You will need the extra hands to navigate through the doors, down the ramp or stairs and loading. The more hands the better as pianos can be awkward to maneuver!
  • Get equipment needed ready. If you can locate or borrow cargo straps, a stair ramp or furniture dolly – do so. Blankets will also come in handy for padding around the piano. You might also use tape to secure the padding and furniture pads to guard doorways from damage.

Now that you have all hands on board and materials needed in moving a piano yourself – let’s get started.

  • First, you want to wrap the piano with the blankets or padding that you obtained. Make sure the keyboard lid is closed and locked. If the lid does not lock then make sure it is closed before wrapping. This will keep the keys protected during the move.
  • Continue wrapping. Make sure to get all the corners and edges of the piano but do not let the tape come in contact with the piano as it may damage the wood. Once the piano is wrapped and cushioned properly, it is ready to move.

Lifting the Piano

  • Never lift with the legs! Whether lifting onto the truck or the furniture dolly, NEVER lift by the legs! You want to keep this is mind as the piano legs are vulnerable and at risk. Also you always want to keep the piano in the upright position. Rolling a piano on its side is not good for the inner mechanics so it is never a good idea. Try to keep it upright as much as you can.
  • Have at least one person on each corner of the piano. Maneuvering through the doorways can be tricky. Communicate effectively to adjust over any thresholds that might be in the pathway. It is usually a good idea to use furniture pads to guard the corners as well. Once the piano is in the truck, make sure it is secured. Lock the casters if possible.
  • The piano should be placed at the front of the truck’s interior nearest the driver. Once it is in place, secure it once again. Make sure the piano is not able to roll around during transit. You can do this by either using the cargo straps to secure to the truck or by using planks.

After arriving at the final destination confirm where the piano is to be moved and follow the same steps as before.

Acoustics and Retuning

After the piano has been safely relocated, check to see if it needs to be retuned.  Often the sound of the piano can vary from location to location due to different surroundings. Factors include potholes or bumps in the road from the move itself, room size, wood and carpet floors and ceilings can all affect the acoustics of a piano.