Major Repair Guidelines
How Do I Decide?

How do I decide if major repairs are appropriate?

Not all pianos are worth the expense of reconditioning or rebuilding. In consultation with your piano technician, you should consider the following factors:

  • The overall condition of the piano. Can it really be restored to original condition or has it deteriorated beyond repair? Pianos subjected to severe fire, flood, or moving damage may not be repairable.
  • The quality, size, and type of piano. Low priced, small pianos of poor design have limited potential. If the rebuilt piano would not be capable of meeting your performance needs, it would be better to replace it with one of better design.
  • The cost of repairs versus replacement. Major repairs may exceed the value of small low-quality pianos. However, most large high-quality instruments can be rebuilt for one-half to two-thirds the cost of a comparable new piano, making rebuilding a cost effective option.
  • Sentimental value. Personal attachment or historical value may justify investing in major repairs rather than replacement.

Refinishing a fine piano, though not inexpensive for a professional job, is important to retain or enhance its original value and to protect the veneers. Traditionally, the object of refinishing a piano is to restore the original look of the instrument. However, some customers change the color of the piano to make it match the furniture in their homes. While this is possible, professionals usually don't recommend changing solid colors (black, white, etc.) to wood finishes (mahogany, walnut, oak) since removing a solid base color may reveal some damages, imperfections, or mismatched veneers (e.g., mahogany with maple and poplar) in the original wood from the factory since it was never intended to be anything other than a solid color.

The piano will be completely disassembled and the wood stripped, sanded, re-stained, and finished with multiple hand-rubbed coats of lacquer. The cost is determined by the linear foot length of the piano plus extra repairs, if any.

Your piano is a major investment which deserves to be protected through regular servicing by a qualified, professional technician. Properly maintained, your piano will sound its best and will not only give you and your family a lifetime of enjoyment, but will be a usable instrument for generations to come.