How to Move Pianos Safely

Tanla Venn, Director PR
How to Move Pianos Safely

If you are moving house with a Grand Piano or Baby Grand Piano, it is almost certainly your most treasured piece of furniture. Owners of these pianos are either passionate pianists or have inherited a beautiful family heirloom. You cannot afford to make an error in your plan to move this substantial piece of furniture.

I'll say straight up that at You Move Me, unless our moving specialists have had specific, comprehensive training to move Grand Pianos or Baby Grand Pianos, they are not recommended to do so. However, in most cases we can refer you to a quality piano mover we trust to move your piano safely.

Upright pianos are a different story. You Move Me does move upright pianos, although they require very specialized care as well, and I'll address them in this post.

A Grand Piano can cost several hundred dollars or as much as half a million dollars! They weigh anywhere from 650 pounds to an incredible 1300 pounds. And they are impressive in size, at five feet wide by as long as nine feet. Larger pianos certainly can be manhandled through a move, but this is at the risk of damaging the interior workings of the piano. Basic fixes can cost $2000 or more, and for full rebuilds or serious damage the costs can go well into the thousands of dollars. Yes, professional piano movers are your friend!

Professional piano moving is actually a trade. Specialized tools, techniques and knowledge are required to safely transport and navigate a piano from one home to another. Yes, you will pay extra for this service, but ask anyone who has tried to move a grand piano themselves and chances are you'll hear an oft-told family story!

What about upright pianos? These are definitely easier to handle and transport, but professional movers are often a wise investment when moving them. Again, upright pianos are heavy and the risk of damage is high for do-it-yourselfers, which translates to unnecessary repair costs. If you really want to move your upright yourself, here are a few pointers from our professional piano movers to help mitigate accidents:

  • Measure your piano and configure a safe route to move it out of your home and into your new home. Measure doorways, stairwells, etc...
  • Have the right tools, such as piano dollies, protective cloths, and furniture pads
  • Lock piano lids and be careful with piano rollers to ensure they can withstand movement
  • Have a large group of strong friends to help move the piano, with a plan to alternate movers as necessary
  • Secure the piano to the back wall within the moving truck with straps and keep covered with furniture padsFinally, once your piano is in your new home plan have it tuned once it's become acclimated to the new environment, about six weeks.

Happy piano moving!