Moving a piano

Unless you have a battalion in your charge, moving a piano around your house can be a real pain. I don’t want to imagine what this could cause if you are moving houses or moving into a new flat.

You are out of trouble only if you own a digital piano or one of those MIDI keyboards, they are super light these days and very easy to carry around with those gig bags. But moving a grand piano and even moving an upright piano, is a different story altogether. It’s a big task which requires two things: either at least 7 or 8 people who know how heavy and fragile a piano is, or experts in moving big musical instruments which is very hard to find.

You don’t really want to be telling stories about how hard it was to move your piano. “Piano falling…” “the corner crashed into a wall…”

Pianos are super heavy! An upright piano could go from 500+ pounds,(almost 227 Kg). A grand piano may weigh as much as 1200 pounds! We are talking about the heavyweights of musical instruments here and you don’t really want to mess around with them.

However, moving a piano is not just a matter of weight alone but also about the inertia and balance; knowing these two things can make a big difference on doing a move job safely and efficiently. A piano has asymmetric shapes, they are strong but also fragile at the same time. They have complex mechanics inside that if damaged can cause tuning problems down the line. Working with pianos requires proper equipment and someone with the understanding of what moving a piano involves.

So tell me Luis, how can I move my piano?

Well, first try to get some professional help to do it for you, believe me it will be less hassle and also reduce the risk of damage. But, if you decide to do it yourself, make sure you have at least 5 friends helping you and please please please, give them clear instructions about what to do to avoid damage – themselves and/or your piano.

Two very important things before you starting moving your piano:

1. Make sure your piano can be accessed from all sides.
2. Make sure the new location will accommodate your piano and that it’s not too hot or cold.

Once those two things are checked, continue:

3. Lock the lid!
4. Position at least one person on each side of the piano (see point one)
5. Move the piano endways and make sure you DO NOT bend your back when handling the piano, use your knees instead.
6. Make sure there aren’t any obstacles in the way.
7. Move the piano slowly and carefully. There is no rush.
Again, getting the experts in is probably the best option if possible. It might cost some good money but paying a moving company might well be worth the money you will save on paying for a damaged piano or bodies.

Good luck whenever you move your piano around!

2 thoughts on “Moving a piano

  1. Hello Luis,

    Thank you for your article and your advice full of common sense. Good idea to have posted a check list that I find very useful and made ​​aware of precautions to take before moving his piano. Good continuation and long life at Rocket Piano Blog ;-)

    Best regards,

    Cedric Charaudeau
    http://www.apprendre-le-piano.com

  2. Yes, moving pianos is not an easy task. I have done this several times! Affording a moving company would be best as they know exactly what to do. Otherwise, I have found it helpful to use at piano mover (flat dolly with 4 wheels) to be helpful. Have 1-2 people lift each side individually onto the dolly and it makes it easier to wheel it around.

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