When moving home, there are plenty of large and bulky items that you’ll likely need to have moved. None are larger and more difficult to move than a piano though. If you’re moving home and own a piano, you’re likely to wonder about moving piano costs.
Although pianos are extremely heavy and difficult to handle, they’re not impossible to move from one property to another with the right expertise and experience. There’s no reason you can’t have your piano moved for an affordable price without it sustaining any damage.
Read on to find out more about who you should hire to move a piano, the cost of moving a piano and some of the best ways to save money.
Is it necessary to hire piano movers?
When you need to have a piano moved, you will absolutely need to hire professionals with experience. It’s never recommended that you attempt to move a piano yourself. Not only would you likely end up damaging your piano and property, there’s a good chance you could seriously injure yourself in the process.
How does piano removal work?
Because moving a piano is much more complicated than your standard boxes or even other large pieces of furniture, proper planning is vital. Below are the main steps involved.
The first step for piano movers when moving a piano is planning. The planning stage involves visiting with the customer so they can ascertain the size of the piano, how accessible it is and how to best remove it from the property.
Careful handling is of course an extremely important part of moving a piano. Pianos have lots of moving, intricate parts and they’re not designed to take heavy blows. This being the case, any good piano movers will take extreme care when manoeuvring a piano.
Removing from the property
When it comes to removing a piano from a property, it’s usually done by placing it onto a dolly. If the piano is in an upstairs room and needs to be taken down a flight of stairs, then portable ramps will be placed on them so it can be taken down smoothly.
After the piano is removed from the property, it will then be loaded onto the van or truck using the dolly. In some cases, a piano is too large to get through the front door and will need to be removed through a window. This can be done using either a hand-operated lift or a crane.
Strapping the piano in place
Once the piano is in the vehicle, it’ll then need to be strapped into place. This part is incredibly important too since it prevents the piano from toppling over or moving excessively while it’s being transported.
How to prepare for piano movers
To best prepare for a visit from piano movers on the day of the move, you should –
- Make sure your property is as accessible as possible (this might mean parking your car(s) elsewhere
- Make sure any hallways or corridors are completely clear so there’s nothing to trip on
- Make sure you can be conducted easily by having your phone on at all times
How much will it cost?
It’s hard to give an exact figure where piano removals are concerned since there are so many factors that have to be taken into account.
- The size/type of piano – There are many different types of pianos, all in different sizes and weights. Grand pianos are generally the hardest and most challenging to move but there are also baby grands, square grands, uprights and organs. How much you pay will depend on the size and weight of the piano as well as how difficult it is to move.
- The distance covered – The distance covered will certainly play a big part in how much you pay to have a piano moved. A piano will need a large van or truck to move, with fuel costs adding to the overall cost significantly.
- How accessible the piano is – How accessible your piano is will be another big thing that affects cost. A piano that’s in a ground floor room that’s very close to the front door and relatively easy to get out will certainly cost less than one that’s upstairs and in a small, cramped room.
- Additional factors – This could be things like severe weather conditions or traffic accidents on the day of the move. It could also be the case that you have an emergency and need to cancel. Things like this can all add to the overall cost.
In addition to the above factors, the cost can also vary depending on the company, where in the country you live and whether or not cost is charged hourly or at a set rate.
A lot of companies use an hourly rate and this is usually set at 2 hours minimum. For companies that have a set rate, it will be based on the factors mentioned above such as the size of the piano and the distance that needs to be covered.
Ways to save money when having a piano removed
- Compare quotes – Getting quotes from several different piano removal companies is one of the best ways you can save money. The move piano cost set by different companies can vary a lot, so it’s always a good idea to get quotes from at least a few of them. This way you can compare them and pick the one that’s the best value.
- Make your property accessible – Another thing you can do to lower costs is to make your property as accessible as possible. If you have a large driveway, then you should make sure the movers can get as close to your property as possible to reduce the amount of work needed to load the piano into their van.
Piano removal FAQs
- Is it possible to move a piano across the country?
Yes, transporting a piano over longer distances is absolutely possible but it will of course cost quite a bit more than if you were just moving it to another room or somewhere else in the same city.
- What if I just want to move my piano to another room?
If you want to move a piano to another room in your house then you might think you can manage it yourself, but this usually isn’t the case, certainly not for grand pianos.
Professional piano movers will be able to assist you with this and since there’s no fuel costs or need to get it on a truck, the cost is considerably lower compared to transporting a piano.
- Is it possible to move a piano overseas?
It’s certainly possible to move a piano overseas but as you’d imagine, it’s very expensive. The cost will be based on how expensive the piano is as well as the distance between the two countries and what method of transportation can be used.
- Can any removal company move a piano?
No. Although a lot of removal companies do offer piano removal as part of their service package, you shouldn’t take it for granted that they all do. Moving a piano requires the right expertise and equipment and is very different from moving regular items and furniture.
- Can I hire a man with a van to move a piano?
This is generally a bad idea unless they specifically state that they have experience moving pianos. A lot of man with a van services will only have a modest-sized van that isn’t suitable for transporting a piano. Not only this, there’s specific equipment that’s required to move a piano safely and attempting it without this could easily result in it being damaged.
- What are the benefits of hiring a piano moving company?
The main benefit of hiring specialists to move your piano is that you know it’s in good hands and isn’t likely to be damaged in transit. A company that specialises in moving pianos will not only be able to ensure that your piano is transported without any damage occurring but they’ll also have the necessary insurance in place. This means if the worst were to happen and your piano was damaged beyond repair, you’d be fully compensated.
Moving a piano can seem like an impossible task and if you attempted to do it yourself, it most likely would be. Piano movers have the necessary equipment and expertise to ensure your treasured instrument will get to its new location safe and sound.
I’m Paul Smith, Founder and Director of HouseMoveHelper. I have a great love of business, marketing, the wilderness and love to travel. You can learn more about me here.