I work as a Registered Piano Technician in southern WV, as an instructor and partner with The Butler School of Piano Technology, and as a contributor to the Professional Piano Technician's Network. I'm also working toward becoming a Certified Tuning Examiner in the Piano Technician's Guild.
I focus on long term care and maintenance of pianos. This means I do more than just tune. Pianos that haven't been serviced in several years sometimes require a full day service which includes a pitch raise, tuning, cleaning, regulation, minor repairs, and minimal voicing. Pianos that are serviced regularly (1-4 times per year) only receive a full day service as needed.
Pricing and Scheduling
Fees for piano work depend on the needs of the piano and how far I must travel:
- Mileage is 50¢ per mile from Athens, WV if you book on a day scheduled for your area. If you book on a day not scheduled for your area, it's $1 per mile.
- A regular appointment is mileage plus $90, and includes a tuning and whatever else I can fit into a 2 hour time frame. This might include a pitch raise, cleaning, minor regulation, or minor repairs.
- If a piano hasn't been tuned in several years it may need extra work beyond what can be done in 2 hours. In these cases, it might be best to schedule a 3-8 hour time block. These are $45 per hour with the same, single charge for mileage.
It is wise to plan ahead and schedule your appointment 3 to 6 months in advance. I can sometimes schedule sooner if I've have a cancellation. If you need a last minute tuning I will try to accommodate you as best as possible or connect you with another tuner in your area. Existing customers have priority.
The quality of any piano tuning is inversely proportional to the level of noise in the area during the tuning!
DO NOT let anyone “bang” on the keys. This can put the piano instantly out of tune, as well as cause damage to the action.
A piano is affected by temperature and humidity. Changes in temperature can put a piano out of tune more quickly, but this does not usually cause damage. Changes in humidity can not only put a piano out of tune quickly, but most likely WILL cause damage. The problem with this type of damage is that it is slow and subtle, and doesn’t always show until it’s too late. A piano needs to be kept between 35% and 50% humidity, with 42% being ideal. This can be done by treating the room with a humidistat controlled humidifier and/or dehumidifier, or with a climate control system developed specifically for pianos. You can learn more about these systems here.