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Fix Those Sticky and/or Dead Keys on Your Piano!


fix sticky keys on a piano

If the keys on your piano are sticking, it can negatively affect the instrument's playability and sound. Sticky keys can be caused by various factors, such as dust accumulation, humidity changes, or mechanical issues. Here are some steps you can take to fix sticky keys on a piano:

  1. Inspect the keys: Carefully examine the keys to identify which ones are sticking. Look for any visible obstructions or debris between the keys.

  2. Clean the keys: Use a soft, slightly damp cloth to gently clean the surface of the keys. Avoid using harsh chemicals or excessive water, as this can damage the piano's finish. For stubborn dirt, you can use a mild soap mixed with water, but make sure to wipe off any soap residue afterward.

  3. Clean between the keys: Sometimes, dirt and debris can accumulate in the gaps between the keys, causing them to stick. Use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment or a compressed air canister to remove dust and particles from between the keys. Sometimes objects fall between the keys (coins, paperclips etc.) need to be carefully removed.

  4. Check for humidity issues: High humidity can cause the wooden parts of the piano to swell, leading to sticky keys. Invest in a dehumidifier for the room where the piano is located to maintain a consistent humidity level.

  5. Regulate room temperature: Extreme temperature fluctuations can also affect the piano's components. Keep the room at a relatively stable temperature to minimize the impact on the instrument.

  6. Hire a professional tuner or technician: If cleaning and adjusting humidity don't resolve the issue, there might be a mechanical problem with the piano. In such cases, it's best to seek the assistance of a qualified piano tuner or technician (me!). I can diagnose the problem and make any necessary adjustments or repairs.

  7. Avoid DIY repairs if uncertain: Pianos are intricate instruments, and attempting complex repairs without proper knowledge and experience can cause more harm than good. If you're unsure about fixing the problem yourself, it's always best to consult a professional.

Remember, regular maintenance and care can prevent many common piano issues, including sticky keys. It's a good idea to have your piano tuned and inspected by a professional at least once a year to ensure its optimal performance and longevity.


See a great "Fix It" article I found on the web.


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