You own a piano you love (but in a totally plutonic way).
But you gotta send the piano away for a while… into storage.
Both you and the piano cry a little, then after one last passionate all night
playing session, it's time to for you and your piano to take some "time off."
Many piano relationship experts will tell you to avoid storing a piano if at all
possible. They suggest you have the piano stay with a relative or friend who can
keep the piano in their home or apartment until you’re ready to be together
But what if that’s not possible?
A climate controlled storage facility is the best storage choice. Then the piano
won’t be subjected to big temperature swings and big humidity changes, both of
which can cause a lot of damage to a piano not to mention make it cranky when
you do finally pull it out of storage.
Pianos are sensitive creatures and dislike temperature and humidity changes.
Frequent, severe swings in temperature and humidity can wreck the wood piano
case; doing things to it such as drying it out to the point of cracking if it’s
too dry for a long time or warping it and wrecking the wood if it’s too humid
(that's bad if you enjoy how your pianos currently sounds, if not, then by all
means, warp away).
Frequent or severe temperature and humidity changes will also cause the piano to
go out of tune sooner than it normally would. It can also cause the wool cloth
in the piano actions on better quality pianos to deteriorate (also bad).
If you have a piano at an unheated summer home or cottage, it’s probably better
to keep the piano there during the cold winter months than to move it back and
forth every year. If a person has to choose between storing a piano in a place
that’s very hot versus very cold, the piano will usually fare much better in the
cooler place. Some experts suggest placing moth balls in the piano during the
winter storage period, taking care to make sure the moth balls don’t touch the
finish of the piano. Just be sure to remember to remove them before you start
using the piano again.
One additional warning comes from “The Piano Book” by Larry Fine (an excellent
and comprehensive resource book on pianos). He says a piano that has been kept
for years in an area that was damp or unheated should never be moved to a dry
location or a well-heated location. Larry says pianos that have had this done to
them have been known to “self destruct” in a short period of time.
And just remember, sometimes the differences between your and your piano may be
irreconcilable. You may be better off selling your piano and breaking up on a
permanent basis than keeping it around… making it harder for you to move on.