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Complicated task: Moving pianos through staircase

Complicated task: Moving pianos through staircase

Moving a piano on flat ground is already challenging for many, particularly amateur movers. Now, imagine moving the piano up a steep staircase.

Carrying pianos upstairs or downstairs poses significant risks to the instrument and the mover. Upright pianos typically weigh between 250 and 360 kilograms, while grand pianos can weigh from 300 to 650 kilograms. Additionally, most pianos have a polyester resin finish that, if damaged, can shatter like glass.

Slippery surfaces are a concern, as not all floor coverings offer sufficient traction. Even carpeted steps can become slippery if the mover does not wear the proper footwear. Additionally, narrow and curved staircases in older homes can make piano transport difficult.

Doorways, particularly narrow ones or those with sills, may also pose challenges for movers. Weather conditions, such as snow, ice, rain, or wind, can further complicate the moving process, especially when dealing with exterior steps.

Avoiding common mistakes

One common mistake often made by movers is using the piano’s pedal as a handle when carrying it through the staircase. To avoid this, place carrying straps on the piano. These straps keep all moving parts secure, including strapping down the lid to prevent accidents.

Coordination plays a crucial role in ensuring a smooth move. When everyone lifts or pushes the piano at different times, it can make even a 5-foot piano feel as heavy as a 9-foot grand piano. That’s why a strong, well-coordinated team that works together seamlessly is necessary. Team members should know when to step and how high to lift, minimizing the risk of accidents.

Dollies and planks are indispensable for maneuvering the piano, especially on staircases with landings and turns. Planks should be secured to the staircase, allowing the piano to be placed on a dolly. It eliminates the need to lift and carry the piano for each step.

Gloves are a simple yet vital addition. They enable a better grip and prevent hands from slipping, ensuring the safety of both the mover and the valuable piano.

Disassembling makes it easy

Disassembling a piano into individual parts is simpler than moving the whole piano up or down the stairs. When preparing a piano for moving, several common steps are typically involved.

Firstly, it’s advised to remove the lid, particularly in the case of a baby grand piano, as the lid is quite heavy, and any surface damage can be challenging to repair.

Next, the lyre and pedals must be disassembled. The lyre is the component that connects the pedals to the piano’s main body, and while disassembling it is relatively straightforward, care must be taken to avoid any damage.

Additionally, in many instances, it’s practical to remove the piano’s legs, especially when dealing with narrow doorways or turns in the staircase. Professional piano movers know when it’s necessary to remove the piano’s legs to ensure a smooth move.

With the information about moving a piano up or downstairs in mind, the decision to move it yourself or hire professionals should be carefully considered. Several factors come into play, such as the number of stairs, any turns or landings in the staircase, and the steepness of the stairs.

The complexity of your specific moving situation can determine whether you opt for professional movers or do it on your own. Hiring licensed movers is not only more time-efficient but also safer for everyone involved.

Do-It-Yourself moves can easily lead to mistakes, potential injuries, or damage to the piano. If you choose to proceed on your own, thorough research and the right supplies are essential for a safe and successful move. Taking your time and having enough people on hand is key to ensuring a secure piano move.

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