All piano makers recommend a tuning every six to twelve months for string stability. See expanation of "neglected piano fee" in Service Questions below.
|Cost in $
|Basic Tuning grand or vertical
|Neglected piano fee (see above)
|0-100 in addition to basic fee
|Service call for repairs
|Repairs or adjustements on tuning visit
|Appraisal with tune add
|Piano Inspection (evaluation)
|Inspection with tune add
|Clean belly (grand sttring area
After one year or even six months a piano will usually be out of tune to a certain degree depending on environment, skill of tuner and quality of the piano. If a piano is not tuned at least once a year it is considered neglected and may require extra work to set it at the proper pitch and fine tune it. The deviation from standard pitch (A440) is measured in cents. 100 cents equals one musical half step. Technically a deviation from A440 of 7 cents or more will require the technician to perform two tunings on the piano to help stabilize it. The first pass to set the pitch at A440 and the second to fine tune it. The cost for this extra work will vary depending on how far the pitch of the piano has deviated from the standard of A440. Severely neglected pianos might be off the standard by a full half step (100 cents) or more requiring extensive adjustments where others may be able to be adjusted in a shorter period of time. This is why the fee varies from $0 to $100. Checking the piano in person will be required to give an accurate cost of tuning.
Tuning fork mounted on small sounding plate
Standard pitch for musical instruments has changed over the years but is usually set to A 440 cycles per second or "A440" as it is usually referred to.
In order for the technician to establish this pitch for the piano, a tuning fork can be used as a reference. There are also electronic references that are just as accurate and in most cases more reliable since they are not affected by temperature like a metal tuning fork.
Usually it takes about 1-1/4 to 2 hours depending on the need for a pitch adjustment. If repairs are needed it would take longer depending on the work involved.
Minor repairs are included in the tuning fee. If it's only one or two small items that take just a few minutes to fix there would be no charge. After examination we will let you know if a repair(s) are included in the tuning fee or if there would be an additional charge before we do the repair or adjustment.
"Double tuning" is a term sometimes used to refer to a pitch raise (see below) combined with a tuning. Since the technician must actually go through and adjust all of the strings two times; once for the pitch raise and then again to tune the piano.
When a piano has been neglected for several years, the pitch of the piano (normally A440 cycles per second) can decrease from the wire (strings) being under constant tension and not tuned. In order for the tuning to be fairly stable after such neglect, the pitch must be set first by bringing it up to A440 after which it can be tuned. If the pitch raise is not done, the piano will not be as stable nor will it sound good. In fact it may sound even worse than it did before it was tuned. Raising the pitch is essential for stability in the tuning process.
The labor rate is $145 per hour and is prorated if the repairs take less than one hour. For small minor repairs with a tuning call the repair fee may be waived at the technicians discretion.
A piano appraisal is useful for at least two reasons. First, if you have an expensive piano or one that would be hard to replace, such as an older piano that has been with the family a long time, having the value in writing for the insurance company will help you to recover your loss in some way if the instrument is damaged or destroyed. Another reason for an appraisal would be to have the value of the piano in writing for any prospective buyers to reference when considering your asking price.
A 43 point thorough examination of the piano to establish it's current condition.
There are at least two reasons for having a piano evaluated. The first is for the piano buyer's benefit. It's similar to the reason why a person would hire a mechanic to check out a used car before purchase. A piano technician can look for several things that a buyer may not be aware of that would decrease the value of the instrument and in some cases render it useless. It also gives the buyer a complete picture of the condition, as well as any repairs or adjustments that are needed. This puts the buyer in a position of knowledge to negotiate a fair price with the seller who probably also was not fully aware of the piano's true condition.
The second reason would be for the seller who, with the information at hand, is in a better position to sell the piano for its real value. With knowledge of the needed repairs or adjustments, the seller may choose to make them before the sale or inform the buyer of what is needed. This can deter any resentment on either side of the deal and actually be an advantage to the seller. When a buyer sees the honesty and frankness of the seller and that he went to the extent of having the evaluation, the buyer is put more at ease and is thankful to have this information before purchase. If they like the instrument, this information could 'seal the deal' as they say.
Another reason for an evaluation would be for the owners education. It lets them know the condition of the piano and what might be done in the future to improve its playability and value. This might be good for someone who has inherited a piano and needs to know what they have.
Yes. When a piano is being tuned by ear and even by machine it important that other noises do not interfere with the hearing process or the microphone picking up the piano sounds. Quietness is the important thing. There can be sounds but the volume needs to be low enough so the technician can do his work without distraction. Generally, the quieter it is, the better job the technician will be able to do.
The cleaning usually refers to just the inside of the string area on a grand piano which is called the "belly" of the piano. Everything you see there would be cleaned including: the tuning pin area under the music desk (where you set your sheet music), the strings themselves, assessable parts of the soundboard (under the strings), the plate (big metal thingamajig holding the strings) and the inside rim around all of this. Cleaning and polishing the exterior and hardware can also be included.
No. You don't have to do any repairs that you don't feel like doing or can't afford. Any type of repairs to a piano including replacing or repairing broken strings will only improve how the machine (piano) functions and help it from becoming more broken or worn. Of course many repairs also improve the sound and playability of the piano too.