How to Move a Piano


If you need to move a piano, hopefully you'll have professional help available. If you decide to ask friends, you will have to give them very clear instructions to avoid inflicting damage to bodies and objects. Here are a few steps to help you move your piano from one location to another.

Things You'll Need

  • Work Gloves
  • Heavy-duty Dollies
  • Plastic Covers

Move a Piano Within a Room

  • Make sure the piano you want to move is easily accessible from all sides.

  • Make sure the new location you have have chosen is suitable for the piano. Do not move it into cold drafts or close to heating devices.

  • Lower the lid and lock it before you start moving.

  • Position at least one person on each end of the piano if you are moving an upright piano.

  • Move the piano endways, not sideways.

  • Make sure you do not bend your back when handling the piano to avoid severe back strain or injury. Lift with your knees bent and your back straight.

  • Be certain there are no obstacles in the way the piano is moving.

  • Be careful not to strain the legs of the piano if you have to move it on carpeting or over a threshold.

  • Move the piano slowly and carefully, just a few inches at a time.

  • Put at least three persons around a grand piano, one at each leg.

  • Take enough weight off the casters to make it roll more easily, but do not lift it off the floor.

  • Make sure you lift the casters over bumps in the floor, one leg at a time.

Moving an Upright Piano From Room to Room or House to House

  • Assign a team of four movers and place two at each end of the piano. Let no one other than your assigned movers touch the piano.

  • Make sure none of the movers has a history of back problems.

  • Make sure your helpers are wearing work gloves to protect their hands.

  • Cover the piano with protective plastic if you have to move it outside for transport.

  • Make sure the lid is down and locked.

  • Give your movers very specific instructions on how and where to move the piano safely.

  • Put the piano on a heavy-duty dolly. This will preserve tuning. It will also keep movers from damaging the piano or your home.

  • Remember to lift and roll the piano endways.

  • Keep hold of the handle behind the piano all the time it is rolling.

  • Be careful rolling the dolly over thresholds and door jambs.

  • Make certain that the piano won't tip over by being pushed over any obstacle too fast.

Tips & Warnings

  • Because most of the weight of an upright piano is located toward its back, it does tilt over easily. When moving it away from a wall, be absolutely sure no one is standing behind it.
  • Spinets and console pianos have thin front legs that can break off easily if caught. Tip the piano back very slightly as you roll it to avoid damage.
  • You should use friends for moving your piano only if you really cannot afford to pay professional movers. Paying a moving company might well be worth the money you might save on paying for damaged pianos and bodies! And don't even think about moving a grand across town, let alone up and down stairs, without professional help!
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