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A Complete Guide on How to Move a Piano

beautiful piano

Depending on the piano you have, it might’ve cost you anywhere between $3,000 to almost $200,000. Regardless of however much you’ve spent on your instrument, we’re willing to bet that it’s a highly treasured possession of yours, maybe even the most valued item you have!

In any case, you might be moving soon, and you want to make sure that your piano is transported unscathed. Just one scratch can completely break your heart, after all.

So are you wondering about how to move a piano safely and soundly? Then you’re in the right place!

In this article, we’ll go over all the important details of moving a piano, including how much it’d cost to do so and how to pick the right moving company.

How to Prepare Your Piano for Moving

As you might already know, your piano is a fragile thing, even if it’s a grand piano. It’s made up of little wooden parts and metal strings, and just one wrong move can cause it to break.

To prevent this from happening, you’ll want to prepare your piano before you move it, whether you’re doing it on your own or with professional help. The steps will depend on which type of piano you have.

Upright Piano

Upright pianos are very easy to prepare for moving. You’ll want to cover the keys with a cloth and then close the cover.

Then, get something like a big blanket to wrap around the piano. If there are legs, you should tuck the blanket in between them.

Grand Piano

With a grand piano, you’ll have more parts to remove and stash away. It’s more work, but it’ll mean your piano will be safer.

First, remove the music stand if possible. You should then also remove the pedals so they don’t get damaged in the move either. You can do this by unscrewing the rods.

You might also want to unscrew the legs so there are fewer parts that can potentially break in the move. You can then wrap up the legs and the pedals.

Now cover the keys with a cloth and then close the cover. You can also wrap a grand piano in a big blanket, taking care to tuck it between the legs and along the bottom edges.

How to Move a Piano (Without Damaging It)

The simplest way to move a piano without damaging it is to use a professional. These people are trained in handling large and fragile objects, plus they do it often.

A good moving company will have actual experience moving pianos, which means they’ll treat yours with the care and respect it deserves.

If you must move a piano yourself, then it’s certainly possible. However, you’ll need equipment like a piano trolley, straps, blankets, tape, and other things like plywood if you’re using a portable container.

Never try to move a piano by yourself; even an upright requires at least two people to move it safely. You’ll always want to measure everything first, both in your current residence and your new home. That way, you can ensure that your piano will get in and out easily, without leaving a mark (or getting damaged!)

As you can see, trying to move a piano can be quite a hassle. Not only will it take a lot of equipment and time, but also quite a bit of effort. And in the end, because you’re probably not an experienced mover, you might end up damaging your piano anyway.

To get peace of mind, and to save yourself some time and stress, it’s always a better idea to move a piano with a professional.

How Much Does It Cost to Move a Piano?

Now that we have you convinced on using a professional moving company to move a piano, you might be wondering how much it’ll cost.

We wish there was a ballpark range we can just give you, but it really depends on several factors. For all intents and purposes, the average is anywhere between $250 to $1,000.

As you can see, even the average is quite a big range. This is because your actual price depends on the company you choose, how far you’re moving, type of shipping (consolidated or not), and the date you choose (expedited or not).

How to Ship a Piano Safely Long-Distance

You might think that transporting a piano with professionals is only available for short-distance moves. But in fact, you can also ship a piano safely with professional movers if you’re moving cross-country!

A good mover will assign you one driver for the entirety of the journey. This ensures that your piano never has to exchange hands. In some cases, you’ll even be able to check in with the driver to see where your piano’s at and how the trip’s going.

Shipping companies will also allow for door-to-door transportation. This means the driver will come to your home’s door and deliver it straight to your destination. This will let you have peace of mind about the care of your treasured piano.

How to Transport a Piano: What to Do After

So you’ve gotten your piano to your new home safely! Now what?

Many people don’t realize this, but unpacking your piano needs just as much care and attention as packing it. This is because things might’ve shifted around in the move.

So go about unpacking your piano (and its parts) nice and slowly. For all the steps that we provided you earlier on preparing your piano, do them in reverse.

This means you should unwrap the blankets around your piano carefully. Then, if you’ve removed any parts (such as the legs, pedals, and music stand), reattach them.

Moving can also cause things to move around, which can jostle around dirt that was previously hidden. So you might want to give it a good dusting and cleaning.

Lastly, you might want to make an appointment with a professional tuner. It’s very common for pianos to go out of tune after a move, so it can be good to have it tuned up once you’re settled in.

How to Choose a Good Company for Piano Moving Services

At this point, we’ve mentioned professional moving companies a few times now. Chances are, you’re highly interested in hiring one now.

But how can you choose a good company so you’re sure you’re not spending an exorbitant amount of money and that more importantly, your piano will be in excellent hands?

Here are a few things to look for when looking for a trustworthy and reliable shipping company.

Years of Experience

There’s no doubt about it: whichever industry you’re in, experience will tell all you need about a company. Not only do more years mean more happy customers served, but it also means more years to build up hands-on knowledge.

Not only will they have handled more pianos in their years of business, but they’ll also have figured out what does and doesn’t work.

Free Quotes

Any company worth their salt will provide you with a free quote. If anyone ever tries to charge you for one, or worse yet, tries to pressure you into choosing them, that’s a red flag and you should walk away.

On that note, you should gather multiple quotes. That way, you can compare and weed out those on opposite spectrums.

Those with suspiciously low prices might be trying to bait and switch you. And those with extra-high prices might be trying to take advantage of you. It’s always a good idea to go with those with median prices.

License, Certifications, and Insurance

Steer clear from any companies that can’t provide you with evidence of a valid license. Additional certifications might be needed as well.

In addition, you’ll want to choose a shipper that offers insurance. Even if you choose the best company around, anything can happen out of the blue that might damage your piano. If that happens, you want to ensure that you’re fully covered.

Hire the Most Reliable Shipping Company

Now you know how to move a piano, as well as how to get the best company out there.

Your piano is probably one of your most treasured possessions. And it’s worth a lot to you, both in monetary and sentimental value. So don’t just hire anyone when shipping a piano.

Don’t just hire any auto shipping company as well.  Make sure you choose American Auto Shipping. We’ve been in the shipping business since 1999 and have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

When you entrust us with transporting your vehicle whether it’s a short distance or across the country, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that we’ll treat it as if it were our own.

So get an instant quote from us now. We’ll be more than happy to get your car or truck whenever it needs to go, promptly and safely.

Dave Armstrong
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