Q. How often should I have my piano tuned?
A. Almost all piano manufacturers suggest tuning a
new piano four times in the first year and then twice
a year thereafter. At a minimum, a piano should be
tuned at least once a year.
Q. Will my piano need tuning if it hasn't been
A. It's not so much playing a piano that causes it to go out of tune but rather changes in temperature and humidity, and settling of the piano itself. The amount of use a piano gets rarely has much effect on its tuning unless a pianist plays extraordinarily hard.
Q. Will it damage my piano if I don't tune it?
A. Letting a piano get very far out of tune isn't good for it, but the harm is rarely irreparable. A piano adjusts to the tension of its strings (typically 38,000 lbs of pressure). When a piano is allowed to go out of tune, string tension is reduced and the piano settles to the new lower tension. When the strings are pulled up to proper pitch again, the piano typically requires days or weeks to settle again. As it adjusts the string tension is changed slightly and the piano needs tuning again. As a result, pianos that are neglected for a year or more often require two or more tunings to reach stability, while a piano that is kept reasonably in-tune holds its tuning better.
Q. My piano may need a "pitch raise" before it's tuned. What does that mean?
A. When a piano is more than a little out of tune, tuning causes a significant change in the pressure on the piano. If the tuner simply begins tuning each string one-at-a-time, by the time he gets to the last string the total tension on the piano will have changed so much that the first strings are out of tune again. To avoid the problem, the technician has to tighten each of the strings individually (raise their pitch) close to their eventual tension. Once the total pressure on the piano is close to its proper level, he can go back and tune each string more precisely.
Q. My piano doesn't hold its tuning long. What could be the problem?
A. There are several problems that your piano could have. Most commonly the tuning pin block isn't holding the tuning pins tightly enough. The tuning pin block is made of several layers of wood laminate, typically hard rock maple. Holes are drilled into it that are slightly smaller than the tuning pins that are inserted. The friction of the pin on the wood should hold the tuning pin in place against the tension of the string (usually about 180 lbs per string). If the pin has become loose in the tuning pin block, the pin will slip and release the pressure on the string. Sometimes the piano technician can apply a simple remedy, but often the tuning pin block is just worn out.
Q. Can the environment of my home affect my piano?
A. Other tuning problems are caused more by the environment than something inside the piano itself. If the piano is next to a door or window or the temperature or humidity in the room fluctuates substantially, the piano's wood and other parts will expand and contract causing the pressure on the strings to change. The remedy is stabilizing the temperature and humidity around the piano. Often installing a Dampp-Chaser — a device to stabilize the humidity — will help. Not to worry, Rick is a Certified Dampp-Chaser Piano Life Saver Installer.
My students can hear the difference.
As a piano teacher my pianos absolutely must stay in tune. Rick keeps them sounding their best and my students sing his praises.
Magnificent. Simply magnificent.
My piano has never sounded better. Thank you Rick!
Unparalleled musicianship and sound.
My piano needed attention after we moved and Rick was able to restore it to all it's glory.
Registered Piano Technicians are professionals who have committed themselves to the continual pursuit of excellence, both in technical service and ethical conduct. Rick earned his RPT designation by passing a series of rigorous examinations on the maintenance, repair, and tuning of pianos. You can trust that your piano is in good hands when working with Rick's Piano Service.
Your piano is an investment in your future.
Your piano is an instrument of extraordinary promise which can bring you and your family a lifetime of enjoyment. To ensure its performance over that lifetime, it is important to have your piano serviced regularly by a qualified professional.
As a piano technician, Rick can do standard tunings and pitch raises as well as complex repairs like action regulation, voicing and repairing broken parts.
Rick has tuned for many well known musicians in his career including:
Music has always been a
part of Rick's life. From an
early age he found a love
for creating music as a
drummer in a Middle
School band that played
for small gigs and dances.
As his love for music grew,
he decided to pursue a
degree in percussion from
Florida State University.
After college, Rick continued to play with several different bands at local night clubs. After a stint opening a retail music store, Rick was approached by a tenured piano technician to be trained on the trade. Intense training commenced and Rick went on to seek a designation as a Registered Piano Technician (RPT). This year marks the 26th year of Rick's affiliation with the Piano Technicians
Guild (PTG) as an RPT.