Tuning vs Servicing PianosTuning and Servicing can often be mistaken. While tuning is a service offered it is specific to maintaining even, uniform tension on all your strings. Servicing is the act of effecting repairs to the remainder of the piano, its case parts, soundboard, bridges, action and keys, etc., but can include installing new strings.
Servicing then would include a wide variety of repairs, from the simple repair of a broken key or key top to replacing a broken hammer or string all of which could be performed in the home, (or on location: i.e., school, restaurant or stage, etc.). More in-depth repairs are generally categorized into the rebuild or complete restoration.
Rebuilding the piano is the in-depth process of repairing all worn or broken parts inside the piano. A rebuild generally includes repairing the bridges and soundboard, replacing the strings and tuning pins, refinishing the plate and soundboard, replacing damper felts, repairing keys, replacing worn bushings, repairing the action and lyre(or trap work), replacing and/or resurfacing the hammers and backchecks, four shop tunings on new strings and a complete action regulation.
A complete restoration adds to the complete rebuild restoring and refinishing the case or exterior of the piano.
All repairs are above and beyond the cost of tuning. An estimate or appraisal will help determine the extent of repairs needed and the order of importance once servicing begins.
I cannot tell you the number of times I have heard my piano sounds and plays great and we haven’t had anything done in over ten years. Consider this... Would you drive your car for over ten years without changing the oil? And what if it ran but ran a little rough, perhaps wasn’t firing on all cylinders? Would changing the oil help?
Tuning your piano regularly is vital to preventing unnecessary repairs, evens overall string tension and gives clear, fluid, even notes and relationships between notes and octaves. Tuning is as vital to your piano as changing the oil is to your car. Servicing worn parts before they break is like investing in small repairs now to avoid larger ones down the road. If we treat our pianos like we do our cars we can maintain high quality and our piano increases in value as an asset.