Temperature in the northern hemisphere can fall several degrees below zero during winters. As you prepare to keep yourself warm, make sure you also take good care of your piano, so that its ready to be part of the holiday fun with friends and family. Here are some useful tips on how to maintain your piano during the winter months, and also how to take care of your hands.
Table of Contents
Impact of Reduced Humidity
During winter, we turn up the heating inside which sucks moisture from the room and from the piano, which could cause the wood of the piano to swell and shrink.
Piano technicians say it is common for a piano to go out of tune, for reduced tension on the strings, for the action to be affected, during the winter months as the moisture from the piano’s soundboard dries out.
Note: Excessive changes in humidity will definitely impact an acoustic piano. In extreme cases, wood may crack, tuning pins will loosen, strings may rust (happens in the case of high humidity).
You need some form of Humidifier
So what is the solution?
You need some form of humidifier, in case you’re heating your piano room. Using a humidifier unit near the piano will prevent dryness and keep the piano in good condition.
Technicians recommend installing a piano humidity controlhumidity control system on the piano.
Besides humidity, also keep an eye on the temperature. Try to maintain a constant temperature around the piano. An ideal temperature is around 65-72F (18-22C).
While temperature is not a primary concern, it can impact the wood indirectly because it often relates to humidity. If possible, keep your piano away from frequent changes in temperatures as it can impact your piano’s musical quality.
Avoid keeping the piano near heater/radiator or fireplace. Keep it away from windows and doors, which when opened may expose the piano to an icy blast.
Get it Tuned
Its recommended that pianos be tuned at least twice a year to help your piano maintain a more consistent sound and to ensure you’re always sounding your best.
Start of winter is a good time to have your piano tuned. In fact, tuning the piano around the change of seasons allows a piano tuner to adjust the piano as may be necessary for the season.
Some tuners tune the piano slightly sharp to account for the flatness that often comes with dryer air during the colder months.
Also Read: More Piano care tips
keep Your Hands Warm
Cold hands in winter makes it difficult to play the piano, or any other instrument for that matter.
So if you have just entered your house from outside, take some time to warm up before you sit on the piano to play. Warm up, brisk exercise, or even housework will improve your blood circulation and make you (and your hands) warm.