How to Move a Piano And Why You Shouldn’t Do it Yourself

piano keys

Pianos are a great musical instrument, inspiring centuries of classical musicians and giving way to beautiful imagination. It’s not the same if you want to move one.
Moving a piano yourself is dangerous. It's highly recommended to call a professional mover. Click To Tweet

What You Need to Move a Piano

If you have a grand piano, stop whatever you’re thinking of doing and call a moving company. Removals experts do not recommend amateurs to do any experiments with those. This guide is all about moving an upright piano.

So, for the removal of a piano are needed:

  • Tape;
  • Work gloves;
  • Plastic wrap (cloth can be used too);
  • Heavy duty dolly;
  • Dolly straps;
  • Weight lifting straps;
  • Van ramp;
  • Cardboard pads;
  • Upper body strength of at least 4 people.

How to Move an Upright Piano by Yourself

  • Measure and clear the path. Use tape or a rope to measure the door frames and make sure the piano can fit though them. Then clear the path from any obstructions, including carpets.
  • Remove decorations, if any. A good thing about upright pianos is that they have a shape that’s not a pain to handle, unlike grand pianos.
  • Wrap the piano. Firstly, wrap the lid over the keyboard with tape, just in case. This is done to ensure that the lid stays in place during the ride. For the rest of the instrument, you can either use a plastic wrap or cloth that’s big enough to cover it completely. Secure the wrap with tape.
  • Lift piano on dolly. For this, you will need to put on your work gloves and get help from friends. A small upright piano weights around 130 kg. As a comparison, a grand piano can reach 500 kg. You need at least three strong pairs of arms for lifting an upright piano on the dolly (and at least six for a grand piano). While professionals use electronic devices to make it easy, safe and with minimal strain.
  • Strap piano securely with dolly straps.
  • Push with dolly.
  • Use a ramp for the van. The piano should be both pulled and pushed in the van at the same time. Use the lifting straps for that and be very careful when standing behind it.
  • Secure the piano in the van. The piano should be placed against the back wall of the van with plenty of other stuff in front of it. You can secure it with furniture.

Don’t Injure Yourself! Get in Touch with the Specialists:

How to Move an Upright Piano Downstairs

The serious trouble, however, comes when a step or a flight of steps lies on your path to the van. This is also the main reason why people call professionals.

If there is only one step, you can use the weightlifting straps, lift the piano along with the dolly and carry it down. For more steps, you’ll have to lose the dolly.

Place cardboard pads on all steps so that you avoid scratching the surface. The piano should be held by everyone with lifting straps. Lift and put down one step at a time.

How to Move an Upright Piano Upstairs

Bringing a piano up a flight of stairs requires the same amount of lifting, but you’ll find out it will tire you out a lot more. Just as the previous lifting method, remove the dolly and use straps and cardboard pads.

Lift the piano one step at a time, just like when moving it downstairs.


If the piano loses balance, get out of its way, otherwise it may cause serious injury and even death. Click To Tweet

Don’t forget to tune the piano anew when the move is over. It may look tough, but the inner mechanics are sensitive to just about anything.

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