How to Move a Piano Safely

Everyone likes the idea of accomplishing big tasks by themselves. Moving a piano is not an easy feat, and you may be surprised to find out that lifting the piano itself is not always the hardest part. What's most difficult about moving a piano is relocating it without damaging it or interior of your home. This is why it's always best advised to have professional piano movers handle it, so you can be sure the piano will be fully-protected and safely relocated.

A piano has 88 keys, but did you know that it’s common for them to have more than 10,000 internal moving parts? Moving such an intricate, heavy, and complicated instrument without damaging it is difficult, and piano moving professionals are best equipped to do this safely. You can always do it yourself, but it takes quite a bit of preparation and a lot of manpower.

Charlie Chaplin demonstrates how NOT to move a piano

How to move a piano yourself

If you intend on moving your piano on your own, it's a good idea to have at least four to six non-professionals to help safely maneuver and lift the heavy musical instrument. Our professional piano movers have the experience and strength needed so we can usually accomplish a piano relocation with just two or three movers, depending on the difficulty of the piano move.

It's important to be prepared, you'll need professional moving equipment such as piano dollies or boards and straps to secure the piano to the dolly. Don't forget to protect the exterior of your piano with padding, our piano moving professionals use thick quilted moving pads. Take a walk through the path you intend to take the piano in your current and new place, making sure that the piano will fit every step of the way. Read our checklist for moving your piano:

1. Measure your new space

Make sure your piano will fit in its new place. Measure the room, doors, and staircases to make sure there are no obstacles to getting the instrument to its new home.

2. Prepare the right moving equipment

You will need, at the very least, piano dollies or boards, straps, and protective padding. But the precise supplies you’ll need will vary based on the type of piano:

  • For an upright piano: You will definitely need piano dollies.
  • For a baby grand piano: You will need a special piece of equipment called a piano board or piano skid board to move a grand piano. This board requires additional strapping and padding, and you should ensure that it is the right size for your piano.

3. Verify the size moving truck you’ll need

If you're moving other items than just your piano then take an inventory of all your stuff, especially large items like other furniture, and use it to select the correct size moving truck for your move. When you call a professional Northern Virginia moving company we can assist with this determination to ensure you have the right size.

4. Review and prepare the path

Take a walk again through the path you'll be taking and clear any and all obstacles such as furniture, pets and rugs. Also ensure that any stairs you may be using can bear the weight of your piano.

5. Depending on the type of piano you have, you will need to take several steps to move it

  • Moving an upright piano: Make sure that the piano dollies you utilize can convey the entire load of the piano.
  • Moving a grand piano: You should disassemble the legs of your baby grand piano before moving it. Secure the instrument to the piano board (referenced above) with furniture straps and a screwdriver.

7. Load the piano first in the truck and make sure it is securely tied down

The piano ought to be one of the first things placed on the truck. Secure the piano with furniture straps and ropes to prevent movement during travel.

8.  Don't forget to retune the piano after the move

Moving a piano, in any event, even when everything works out well, can make the instrument lose it's tune. Be sure to set up to have it tuned after the move — however piano experts recommend waiting at least one month after moving to let the internal parts and mechanisms settle.

What not to do while moving a piano

Now you know the steps to take to appropriately and securely move a piano yourself. Here are a couple of common moving errors to avoid:

Remember pianos are overwhelmingly heavy.

Putting the piano on a scale to know how heavy it will be isn't generally an option. So how would you make sense of what amount the piano weighs, since that weight determines the procedure you'll use for the move as you explore tight paths, corners, entryways, and, possibly to top it all off, stairs?

A piano's weight varies enormously by the model. Grand pianos can weigh as much as 1,400 pounds or as meager as 500 pounds. With respect to upright models, one that is under 48 inches high can weigh as little as 300 pounds. In the event that your piano is 48 inches tall or more, it can weigh as much as 800 pounds.

Here are the weights of the most popular models:

Upright

  • Young Chang 121: 496 Pounds
  • Steinway & Sons Model 1098: 480 Pounds
  • Bösendorfer 130: 582 Pounds
  • Baldwin BH-122: 542 Pounds
  • Yamaha P22: 490 Pounds
  • Steinway & Sons Model K-52: 600 Pounds
  • Kawai K300: 500 Pounds

Grand / Baby Grand

  • Mason & Hamlin Artist Grand Piano BB: 1,090 Pounds
  • Steinway Model D Concert Grand Piano: 990 Pounds
  • Steinway Model S: 540 Pounds
  • Yamaha C3 Studio: 705 Pounds
  • Young Chang Y185: 671 Pounds
  • Mason & Hamlin CC: 1,399 Pounds
  • Steinway & Sons Model B: 760 Pounds

Try not to hold back on manpower.

The weight of pianos are quite overwhelming, so you'll have to secure a great deal of help. Indeed, even the littlest of upright pianos will take in any event three grown-ups to get it securely starting with one spot then onto the next. Remember this: The results of dropping a piano are extreme.

Try not to attempt to lift the piano without gear.

Ensure you utilize the correct hardware and protection. All dollies aren't made equal. You will require a four-wheel piano dolly, special-made piano cushioning, and piano ties and straps fixed to the right tension.

Try not to depend on your piano's casters (in the event that it has them).

They're not so much made to move huge distances, and they degrade with time. Also, those rollers can stick, as well. That can mean torn rug and deep-seated scratches on hard floors.

Try not to move too quickly.

Moving a piano is hard, and it shouldn't be done in a rush. Moving too quick can mean making errors that can cause injury to you, your helpers, your floors, your walls, and that's just the beginning.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does it cost to move a piano?

It's essential to consider every one of the costs included with regards to settling on the decision to either secure professional piano movers to ship your piano or do it without anyone else's help. There are costs for packing, labor, truck usage, fuel, time, and assembly. Every circumstance will be unique.

What's more, there's the subject of tipping your movers. You have to remember to factor this into the cost as well. Contingent upon the quantity of movers and to what extent the move takes, tips could be anywhere from $20 to $100 extra.

What does a piano weigh?

Pianos come in two styles — upright and grand. Upright pianos stand tall vertically and the strings run vertically inside the case. Grand and baby grand pianos are more horizontal and long. Total weight will differ by style and manufacturer.

Most pianos will require 2-3 individuals to move them, utilizing the best possible gear. More individuals might be required if you are using the help of non-professionals or on the off chance that you are moving into a space that has a great deal of obstructions or a troublesome path to navigate.

What do you need to move a piano?

1. Piano dollies: These are unique dollies with four wheels, additional orientation to make turning simpler, and elastic wheels to prevent harming your floors.

2. Tying straps: You will require solid tying straps to keep the piano on the dolly or piano board. Search for locking straps or straps with ratchets attached so you can easily secure the piano. Another strap to consider getting is a "hump strap." It assists with lifting huge, overwhelming things by extending the use of your arms. This is particularly helpful for going up stairs. You fold it over your wrists then through the wheels on the base of the piano, and afterward lift up delicately.

3. Piano board or slide board: This is a large bit of compressed wood that has been covered in cushioning. To move a piano utilizing a slide board, you attach the body of the instrument to it. At that point, you put the board on a piano dolly and the body is moved.

4. Movers cushions or covers: These covers or cushions will protect the exterior finish of your piano during the move. They likewise shield the piano from the straps, tape, ties and any coincidental knocks during transport.

The reality on moving pianos

Regardless of whether you employ an expert piano mover or do it without anyone else's help, ensure you know every one of the expenses and potential dangers of your choice. In the event that you utilize an expert piano mover, the expense of the move itself could be somewhere in the range of $200 to $1,200, contingent upon the size of the piano, how far you're moving it, and whether stairs are included. There are less dangers of harm and damage with professional movers, as the experts utilize the correct hardware and procedures and they'll realize the most ideal approach to move your piano into its new space.

It will cost less cash in the event that you do it without anyone's help, certainly, yet there is a decent possibility that something may get harmed or somebody may get injured — particularly on the off chance that you don't have all the correct hardware. It may be ideal to spare everybody the difficult work and get somebody who recognizes what they are doing to support you. It will spare you time and conceivably cash (should something happen to the piano) over the long haul.

We protect all of your belongings being moved with our full liability and cargo insurance. Moving your piano or organ requires skill. You can trust our experienced movers to handle your property with care. For prompt and reliable service from MyProMovers call our professional piano moving service today at 703-310-7333 or fill out a quote request online.