How to Clean Your Piano & Keyboard

Regularly cleaning your piano is essential to preserve your instrument’s appearance and sound quality. Accumulating dust, dirt, and other particles on the keys can cause them to become sticky or discolored, ultimately affecting your piano performance. However, through proper cleaning and maintenance, you can prevent such issues and maintain the optimal condition of your piano, enabling you to enjoy playing beautiful music for an extended period. Different cleaning techniques are required for cleaning the keys, depending on the materials used in their construction.

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Cleaning the Keys

The most often used piano portion is, without a doubt, the keys! So knowing how to clean the keys without harm is important, especially if you have had a cold or your keyboard has been touched frequently by kids.

When cleaning piano keys, the idea is to leave absolutely nothing behind—no polish, no oil, no chemicals, no residue, nothing at all—on the surface of the keys. Also, avoid using sprays, soaps, or other cleaning products you typically keep in your home.

Read: The Most Important Parts of Piano

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Dust the keys

When removing dust and debris from the keys, it’s important to use a soft brush or microfiber cloth to avoid scratching the surface of the keys. Brushing from the back to the front helps prevent dust and debris from getting stuck between the keys, which can be challenging to remove. You can also use a small handheld vacuum cleaner or a soft-bristled brush attachment to gently remove any accumulated debris between the keys. It’s important to be gentle when cleaning the keys and to avoid using excessive force, as this can damage the keys or the piano’s finish.

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Clean the Soundboard and Casework

You must use a specific, safe piano polish and only use polish when the piano requires a thorough cleaning, buffing, or filling of some minor scratches. Polishing can harm the piano’s finish; if it goes inside, it can harm the parts that make up the action.

If your piano has a lacquer finish, don’t use a high-gloss polish because lacquer finishes aren’t designed to be high-gloss. Use a product with a satin finish instead. On polymer coatings, only use high-gloss polishes.

Avoid using ordinary household furniture polish, products with silicone bases, products containing lemon oil, and aerosol sprays on or near the piano since they can harm the piano’s exterior and interior.

Read: A Few Tips on Caring for Your Piano

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Clean Piano Pedals and Rods

Clean off the pedals:

  1. Use a soft microfiber cloth to remove all dirt and grime from the pedals.
  2. Mix a few drops of dish detergent in a cup or small bowl of warm water if you have some more challenging regions to get rid of.
  3. Wipe the area clean using a towel dipped in this solution.

If available, clean rods. The rods of a grand piano is likely to be seen; therefore, clean those as necessary. The rods for upright pianos will be concealed inside the bottom panel.

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Clean the Soundboard.

You can blow away accumulated dust and grime from the soundboard of either an upright piano, digital piano, or grand piano. To accomplish this, use a can of pressurized air or a vacuum in reverse. But, because it’s so simple to harm the strings and dampers, it’s crucial that you only attempt this if you have previous expertise cleaning piano interiors. Call a professional piano service team to clean the inside of your piano if you need clarification.

Dust can be removed by holding the vacuum or compressed air nozzle a few inches (a few centimeters) away from the soundboard’s surface and blowing vertically toward the strings.  Make sure that neither the vacuum nozzle, the air can, nor your fingers touch the strings or the dampers.

Blow the debris to a piano corner that can be reached, then use a vacuum on the suction setting to clean up the mess. When cleaning a piano, it’s important to be mindful of the materials you’re using, as some cleaning products can cause damage to the instrument’s delicate parts. Abrasive cleaners, for example, can scratch the keys and the piano’s finish, leaving permanent marks and compromising its appearance.

Chemical cleaners can also harm pianos, especially those that contain harsh chemicals like ammonia or bleach. These substances can strip the piano’s finish, causing it to become dull and discolored over time. Additionally, they can damage the glue that holds the keys in place, causing them to become loose or fall out entirely.

To avoid damaging your piano, it’s best to stick with gentle, non-abrasive cleaning methods. For instance, you can use a soft, lint-free cloth to gently wipe down the keys and the piano’s surface, removing any dust or dirt that may have accumulated. You can also use a small brush to gently clean any dirt or debris that may have been collected in between the keys. Keep in mind that pianos are sensitive devices that need extra care and consideration. By gently cleaning and avoiding harsh or abrasive products, you can help ensure that your piano stays looking and sounding beautiful for years to come.

Additional Info:

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