Taking Good Care Of Your Piano
A good piano is an expensive musical instrument to most people and if being taken good care of, it can last you a lifetime. So if you aspire to be a good pianist, you must learn how to love your piano and take good care of it.
Like most musical instruments, there are proper ways of cleaning and caring for your beloved piano. So here are some suggestions on how to take care and maintain your piano.
Humidity and Temperature – A huge part of your piano is made from wood and wood is very susceptible to humidity and temperature. In an atmosphere with high humidity, the piano keys become sticky or sluggish. High humidity can also cause strings and tuning pins to rust.
On the other hand, low humidity can affect the sound of the keys and causing the keys to loosen and soundboards to crack. The recommended humidity range of 35 to 60% is thought to be the ideal for the longevity of the piano.
Since it is difficult for us to control humidity and temperature, there are some things that can be done so that your piano is not exposed to extreme humidity like not placing your piano in direct sunlight, next to the kitchen or near a swimming pool. Getting a dehumidifier is also highly recommended.
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Extreme temperatures can also damage your piano and thus avoid placing your piano where it can be exposed to extreme hot or cold temperatures such as near windows or fireplaces.
How To Clean Piano Keys - Never use alcohol, bleach or any other commercial cleaners to clean your piano keys since most of these cleaners contain artificial substances and chemicals that can dry out the natural oils in your piano keys. Therefore use only cleaners specially made for pianos.
When cleaning the keys, you should only wipe the key tops and avoid moisture from reaching the sides of the keys because the sides of the keys are usually made from soft wood and if dampened, decay and rot may set in.
Sometimes, the dye on the black keys might come off and so it is only wise to use different cloths for the white and black keys. This is because nowadays, real ivories are no longer widely used as before and piano manufacturers use plastic materials for the keys as ivory replacements.
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How To Clean The Soundboard - The piano soundboard is probably the toughest part of the piano to clean. Strangely, dust and debris are somehow drawn to this part of the piano.
Somehow, items like pins, buttons, paper clips, dust and other small items mysteriously make their way into this part of the piano. You can use your vacuum cleaner to remove these debris mindful that you do not hit the piano strings when doing so.
If some of the debris are lodged firmly inside the soundboard, never use a sharp tool to dislodge them and damage the soundboard by accident.
How To Clean the Cabinet - The cabinet is the body of the piano and is usually made from wood. As such, the piano cabinet should be taken good care of as you would any with any good wooden furniture.
There are some products made specifically for cleaning your piano cabinet. You can usually buy them from your piano vendor.
Piano Tuning - It is recommended to have your piano tuned at least once or twice a year. It is also advisable that you engage registered piano tuner-technician. This is to ensure that the technician is qualified to do the job rather than some self taught tuner who may not only do a good job, but damage your piano permanently.
If your piano hasn't been serviced or tuned for a number of years, your technician may also perform a complete pitch raise.
Piano maintenance is the basic skill of any aspiring piano player. So take good care of your piano and your piano will do its job as the beloved instrument of a good pianist.