A piano requires regular fine tuning to ensure the best sound possible while avoiding long-term issues with the strings. Tuning a piano is a complex process involving a lot of skill, technique, and patience, so it is not something every player knows how to do.
However, regular tuning is highly recommended to make sure the piano remains in great condition for years to come.
There are various reasons why your piano needs tuned, from changes in climate to how often it’s being used. Regardless of the cause, any piano owner should look to have their instruments tuned regularly!
Like most services, piano tuning costs vary throughout the UK. Anything from the type of piano to the number of tunings requires will impact the cost of the service.
In most cases, the cost of tuning a piano here in the UK ranges from £90 to £200. Standard tuning is usually the cheapest, taking about 40 to 60 minutes to complete. If more than one tuning is needed, then the cost maybe higher.
How Do You Tune a Piano?
To the untrained ear, a piano often just sounds like any other instrument. However, to a trained musician or technician, every note of the piano is distinct and has its own unique sound. But in order for the piano to produce this unique sound, it must be tuned regularly. This process is known as tuning and it requires not only knowledge and skill, but also patience and precision. Let’s take a look at how to tune a piano correctly.
The Basics of Tuning a Piano
Tuning a piano involves adjusting the tension on each string of the instrument so that it produces the correct pitch when it is struck by its corresponding hammer. Tuning involves more than one note; in fact, there are 88 notes on most pianos—and all 88 must be tuned for the instrument to produce perfect harmony.
The process of tuning a piano can be broken down into four basic steps: cleaning the strings, setting tuning pins, measuring frequencies with an electronic tuner (or tuning fork), and finally transferring those measurements onto other parts of the instrument. Keep in mind that these steps can take several hours and require patience and precision – no matter how experienced you are!
How Often Should You Tune Your Piano?
To keep your instrument sounding its best, it’s important to tune your piano regularly. Generally speaking, most pianos should be tuned once or twice per year depending on use. If you have an older or neglected piano that hasn’t been tuned in years, then you may need to tune it several times over several months before it will hold its tuning for longer periods of time.
Additionally, if you play your piano frequently or if there are large temperature changes (like with central air conditioning units), then you may need to tune your instrument more often than usual.
Tuning a piano can seem like an intimidating task – especially for those with no experience but knowing how to tune one properly is essential for maintaining your instrument’s sound quality over time. With enough practice and dedication, anyone can learn how to properly tune their own pianos; however, if you’re ever unsure about something always consult with an experienced technician or musical professional before attempting anything on your own! Taking care of your instrument with regular maintenance is key to making sure that it continues producing beautiful music for years to come!
There is an industry standard for tuning a piano, known as A440. This standard ensures that the piano remains in harmony when performing with other instruments. Whenever a pianist tunes your piano, they do so to A440 standard.
Why Your Piano Needs Tuned
Regular tuning is an essential part of piano maintenance. Keeping proper tension avoids issues like loose strings, while also giving the tuner a chance to inspect the overall condition of the piano.
Moreover, it ensures that your acoustic piano produces that beautiful sound when performing!
It is recommended that you get your piano tuned at least twice a year, possibly more depending on the frequency of use. For example, if your piano is used in a studio or played live on stage, more regular tuning is needed, as paying often will cause tension to lower much quicker.
Also, if you have recently bought a piano then you may need more frequent tuning. It is recommended that a new piano be tuned 3-4 times each year. Doing so ensures the strings have time to naturally stretch and settle into proper tension.
Factors That Affect the Cost of Piano Tuning
Here is a quick overview of factors that may impact how much it costs to get your piano tuned in the UK:
Experience Level of Your Technician: The experience level of your technician can also affect pricing. A highly experienced technician may charge more for their services, but they also tend to do better work and finish faster than someone with less experience. Make sure you check out reviews and ask around before settling on a technician for your piano tuning needs.
Age and Condition of Your Instrument – The age and condition of your instrument will also influence how much it costs to have it tuned. Older instruments may require more time and labour in order to get them back up to operating standards, so these will usually cost more than newer ones that only need minor adjustments or repairs. Similarly, if your piano is in poor condition or has been neglected for a long period of time, expect the tuning cost to be higher as well since additional work may need to be done in order to bring it back up to optimal performance levels.
Duration: Pianists typically charge per hour to tune a piano, so if tuning takes longer, it may cost more. The more out of tune the piano, the longer it takes to tune.
Humidity: Humidity levels also impact the string tension in a piano, often leading to uneven tuning. This is more common for pianos that are rarely tuned, with frequent changes in humidity causing the soundboard to continually swell and contract. As a result, more robust tuning is needed before the fine tune.
Repairs: If the pianist discovers issues with the piano, then it may need to be repaired before it can be properly tuned. For example, some strings may need to be replaced or parts of the soundboard repaired. In any case, additional repairs on top of the tuning will see a higher cost for the service.
Below are some shops in the UK that offer piano repair and tuning services and are worth checking out.
The Piano Workshop – London: This shop offers piano repairs, tuning, restoration, and maintenance services. They also sell new and second-hand pianos. Website: https://www.thepianoworkshop.co.uk/
Piano Restorations Ltd – Manchester: This company specializes in the restoration and repair of pianos. They also offer piano tuning, sales, and rentals. Website: https://www.pianorestorations.co.uk/
Besbrode Pianos – Leeds: This shop offers piano repairs, restoration, tuning, and sales. They have a large selection of new and used pianos for sale. Website: https://www.besbrodepianos.co.uk/
Coach House Pianos – Hampshire: This company provides piano repairs, restorations, tuning, and rentals. They also sell new and used pianos. Website: https://www.coachhousepianos.co.uk/
Handel Pianos – London: This shop offers piano repairs, tuning, restoration, rentals, and sales. They have a large selection of new and used pianos for sale. Website: https://www.handelpianos.co.uk/
Jaques Samuel Pianos – London: This shop offers piano repairs, tuning, restoration, and sales. They have a large selection of new and used pianos for sale, and are also a Yamaha Premium Dealer. Website: https://www.jaques-samuel.co.uk/
Piano Solutions XXI – Bristol: This company offers piano tuning, repairs, restoration, and sales. They also offer piano rentals for events and concerts. Website: https://www.pianosolutionsxxi.co.uk/
Mark Goodwin Pianos – Oxfordshire: This shop offers piano repairs, tuning, restoration, and sales. They have a wide selection of new and used pianos for sale, including grand pianos, upright pianos, and digital pianos. Website: https://www.markgoodwinpianos.co.uk/
John Morley Piano Services – Nottingham: This company provides piano tuning, repairs, restoration, and sales. They also offer piano rentals for events and concerts. Website: https://www.johnmorleypianos.co.uk/
Piano Workshop – Glasgow: This shop offers piano tuning, repairs, restoration, and sales. They have a large selection of new and used pianos for sale, including grand pianos, upright pianos, and digital pianos. Website: https://www.pianoworkshopglasgow.com/