Buying Piano FAQs

What is the first step to consider when deciding to purchase a piano?

There are several things to keep in mind as you make this decision. The first step to do before you purchase a piano is to evaluate whether it’s likely be for a long-term or a short-term purpose. Are there several potential players in the family? If a parent is already a pianist chances are one family member will play for many years.

With only one potential player, on the other hand, particularly a young child, there is more risk that the instrument will be abandoned after a short while. Therefore you may want to start with a less expensive piano or an electric piano, or even to rent one, and then upgrade to a better instrument when you feel confident that the risk of abandonment has passed.

Should I purchase a new piano or just rent for a student who is starting to play?

Renting a piano is a cheaper alternative instead of buying a new one especially if the student is just starting to play the instrument. Apart from the affordability of renting a piano, you also have the freedom to choose from a variety of pianos available. There are rental agencies for musical instruments where you can pick from a keyboard, a digital piano, a baby grand piano or the grand pianos. You also have the freedom to return the piano you are renting if you do not like it, and then try a new one. You do not have to invest a huge amount of money when renting, unlike when you decided to purchase a brand new one.

Should I buy an entry-level piano for a student who is just starting to play?

Yes. For starters an entry-level piano may be better than investing in a grand and expensive one. If the student is just starting to learn playing he needs a piano in order to practice what he have learned in between every lesson. Practice makes it perfect and that’s goes true with any learning method whether it be playing the piano or just simply studying regular lesson in school.

Should I get a high-end instrument as the student progresses?

There are times when a student who enrolled in piano lesson does it just for curiosity. As he progress in learning he’ll soon realize the reason why he is into playing the piano. In the event that the student has decided to continue with his lessons and is serious about it , it makes more sense to invest in a better instrument, you can then purchase a high-end piano that will last for a long term.

Should I purchase a new piano or a used piano?

If you’re about to start piano lessons or still at the beginning stage, you should consider a used piano until you’re more certain about your commitment to continue. You should also consider your budget here. Unless money is not a factor for you, then you should make a realistic choice. Used pianos can often offer you a lot more value for your money, provided they’ve been well-maintained.

Which one to choose an acoustic piano, or will a digital piano do?

Ultimately, the decision you make depends on your actual purchasing power. If you can afford to shell out a big amount of money, then an acoustic piano can be a great choice. Repairs and tuning expenses should also be included in your computations since pianos usually require tuning at least two times a year. Quite obviously, digital pianos are generally more affordable and they require lesser maintenance. It simply makes sense to pick this if you cannot afford to spend big bucks for an instrument.

Where can I find a good used piano?

You may refer to the local classifieds or ask for referrals from family or friends when searching for a used or 2nd hand piano. You can also search for your next piano online at our pianos for sale section.

Don’t buy 2nd hand pianos over 60 years old, unless they’ve been reconditioned and have brand names. Also, avoid buying pianos from schools, churches, and/or public places because they get a heavy use and many times are neglected.

How can I figure out used piano value?

Playing the piano is a great way to get to its value and you should test as many as possible. If you’re unhappy with the sound of a piano, don’t be afraid to move on. Time must be spent discovering your personal preferences, and learning to appreciate quality. Inspect a used piano at least as rigorously as possible. Try every key with the right-hand pedal depressed to check the tone, and make sure the keyboard, pedals and hammers don’t stick or squeak. Bring a flashlight and open the top. Look to see that all the hammers and strings are there and in good condition. Make sure the hammers aren’t moth-eaten or string-cut, and check for rust and dirt. The price doesn’t connote great value so better be careful. Low piano prices are often too good to be true bring a piano technician along with your visit.

I’m buying a piano for my kid, should I take into consideration the condition and tuning before buying a piano?

Yes! Whether you’re buying a piano for your kid or any member of the family you should always consider the condition and tuning. Buy only a piano that is IN TUNE. A bad piano can cost you a TON of money. Be sure to have it inspected by a professional tuner-technician before buying it, The fee for this service is small compared to the risk of paying too much, or ending up with a lemon.

Should I settle for an authorize dealer, a tuner/technician/rebuilder, or a private party?

When buying a piano you must purchase it from an “authorized” dealer. An authorize dealer has been granted a permit or has been certified by the manufacturer to sell their brand of piano in your area. Technically, only an authorized dealer can sell a “new” piano complete with warranty and factory support. Being an “authorized” dealer is a big deal for the party who has earned that distinction. They won’t risk their name to a poor and low quality product. Moreover authorized dealers has their own technician and sometimes a rebuilder therefore checking the piano before you buy it is free of charge.

On the other hand buying from a private party has its own risks the prices may be lower, but many of the perks will be unavailable. There will likely be no mover, tuner, or warranty on the upright or baby grand. The person who is selling an instrument will not have the selection that a store will have so there won’t be options in cabinetry style, color, or timber. If you buy from a private seller, ask if he/she can include tuning and delivery with the purchase.

Which one should I buy an upright or grand?

Grand pianos are generally better than upright pianos. Although an upright piano may be considered because of space restrictions, because of its design, a grand may be easier to place. The back of an upright piano is ugly. This is why it is almost always placed on a wall. So you need about 5-feet of wall space to accommodate an upright piano

What size of piano should I buy?

When deciding for the size of piano you should consider the size of your home if you have enough space then you can opt for a grand piano. The common size for a medium grand is 5′×5″–6′×2″. If you live in a small apartment, squeezing in a grand may be out of the question right from the start.

What is the difference between a “grand” and a “baby grand”

The most obvious difference between ‘regular’ grands and baby grands is size. Actually, these are just two of the many standard grand piano sizes, the exact measurements of which can vary by manufacturer or location. The following are averages of the most widely-accepted:


Concert Grand9′ – 10′ (2,75 – 3,05m)
Semiconcert7′ – 7’8″ (2,15 – 2,35m)</td >
Parlor6’3″ – 6’10” (2 – 2,08m)
Professional Grand6′ (1,83m)
Medium Grand5’6″ – 5’8″ (1,68 – 1,73m)
Baby Grand4’11” – 5’6″ (1,5 – 1,68m)
Petit Grand4’5″ – 4’10” (1,35 – 1,47m)


The sound quality of a baby grand is almost indistinguishable from those of larger grands, but this becomes less so as the size of the piano decreases.

Upright piano” versus digital (electric) piano-What’s the difference?

Digital piano might be just easier and simpler, while the old upright piano might bring that classical and natural sound to performance. An upright piano will hold its value over time and if it is looked after it will normally increase over a longer period, normally 20 years or more. While the value of your piano depreciates very quickly. New models are introduced every 2-3 years making your piano even less valuable and harder to sell.

What’s the difference between a “grand piano” and an “upright piano”?

In grand pianos, the strings lie horizontally and the hammers hit the strings from below. This means the movement of the keys, actions, and hammers are all in-line with gravity. This helps to produce more rapid repetition and control. In an upright piano, the strings are held vertically and the hammers hit the strings from the side. Thus, gravity does not work in its favor. Therefore, in general, upright pianos produce slower repetition compared to grand pianos. Also in general, grand piano action has more advanced features such as a repetition lever to aid in the speed and reliability of repetition of notes.

What is the difference between an “upright piano” and a “keyboard”?

An upright piano makes sounds using strings, wherein the keys trigger the strings. Because of this, upright pianos are ‘touch sensitive’. You can change the sound depending on how you press the keys. Additionally, upright pianos have a LOT MORE keys than on keyboards. Most upright piano pieces cannot be played on keyboards as there are not enough keys. On the other hand Keyboard music tends to be a lot simpler and easier than an upright piano music. It often has simple chords in the bass and a melody in the treble rather than more complex harmonies on the upright piano.

What piano brands or manufacturer should I consider?

The top of the line pianos is manufactured by Steinway and Sons. Their pianos have set an uncompromising standard for sound, touch, beauty, and investment value. Steinway remains the choice of 9 out of 10 concert artists. However for budget wise and availability you may consider a Yamaha piano. Yamaha pianos help provide the opportunity for everyone who wishes to learn to play the piano. It is produced and supplied to different countries throughout Asia as well as other continents.

How long will a piano last?

How long a piano will last varies greatly, depending upon maintenance and repair, usage, climate, and quality of manufacture. It all depends on how well they are taken care of. If a piano is well maintained, and protected from fluctuations in humidity, it can last 100 years or more. Others that are abused by lack of maintenance and poor climate such as too hot, too much moisture can deteriorate quite fast.

What kind of maintenance does a piano require?

A piano maintenance includes tuning to return the piano to pitch, voicing to adjust the tone, and regulating to adjust the action and change the touch of the piano. Because your piano contains materials such as wood and felt, it is subject to change with climatic conditions. Extreme swings from hot to cold or dry to wet cause its materials to swell and contract, affecting tone, pitch, and action response or touch. You can reduce the severity of these effects by placing your piano near a wall away from windows or doors that are opened frequently. Avoid heating and air conditioning vents, fireplaces and areas which receive direct sunlight. Your piano will perform best under consistent conditions neither too wet nor dry, optimally at a temperature of 68 degrees F and 42 percent relative humidity.

Why does a piano require regular tuning?

Regular piano tunings can prevent serious damage. In order for it to last long pianos should be regularly tuned in. Correct and constant string tension are important to the health of many delicate piano parts especially parts which are very expensive to fix. Tunings help these parts work together smoothly, preventing damage to and from neighboring pieces.

Why does a piano go out of tune?

When the strings stretch a piano may go out of tune. The string is a piece of steel wire, even so, it will stretch, like a very stiff rubber band when tightened. It is designed to stretch significantly, and still not break when at its correct pitch. Another real culprit is the humidity changes. When temperature changes it also affect your piano and how well it remains in tune. It is advisable to keep the humidity and temperature as stable as possible in order to get the best performance from your piano.

How often should I tune my piano?

Pianos should be tuned every 6 months or twice a year. New pianos need to be tuned 4 times during the first year. Four times may seem like a lot, but the piano is a stringed instrument, and stringed instruments by nature will always stray off-pitch. A tuning every 3 months will allow the piano to return to its original state after being altered by both climate changes and play, and this consistency will ultimately prolong its life.

Will constant moving make a piano go out of tune?

Not necessarily so! While extremely severe bumps may knock it out of tune. Primarily, it is when the piano is moved through environments of greatly differing atmospheric humidity…like from a 75 degree furnace-dried-out 25% indoor humidity to 20 degree, damp 85% outdoor humidity and back inside again. This will mess up your tuning greatly unless you keep the piano outdoors only for a very short time. Obviously, moving the piano in the summer does not hurt the tuning near as much.


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