How to Disassemble a Piano

By Gregory Pavliv
Huge, heavy and delicate

An upright piano can be disassembled by simply removing the few wooden openings from the top and front. A grand piano requires more explanation and finesse in order to not damage the typically large and easily damaged instrument. Most piano finishes are resistant to typical pressure, but any bumps or supported falls will permanently scar the finish. The rest of the piano, though weighing upwards of 800 pounds, is a delicate piece of machinery and should be disassembled with great care.

Remove the lid from the piano by unscrewing each of the piano hinges from the main body of the piano. Leaving the hinges attached to the lid makes reassembly much easier. Wrap the lid in a furniture pad or heavy comforter.

Slide the music stand forward towards the bench and remove it from the main body of the piano. Secure the stand to the base using twine or wrap the piece securely using tape around a furniture pad.

Rest the piano gently on its long side, the left side. It should be resting on soft, non-abrasive carpeting and should be supported by helpers wearing non-abrasive gloves.

Knock the securing pieces of wood, which hold on each leg, with a rubber mallet. The leg should loosen, and it can be removed from the main body. Repeat on remaining two legs.

Lay the piano flat on the ground atop a piano skid or several furniture pads. This is a simple way to move the piano if it is staying within the building. If moving the piano outside of the building, it is best to hire professional piano movers who will attach it to a piano skid.

Tip

Piano skids are used to slide pianos across surfaces and are fastened to pianos using harnesses and straps. If needed, some moving companies offer these for rent.

Warning

A piano is heavy and can break easily. Be sure to have several extra hands available during disassembly.

About the Author

Gregory Pavliv is a curriculum designer who has been writing professionally since 2005. His curriculum has been featured on the documentary, "Classroom Close-Up." He has a Bachelor of Music from Berklee College of Music and a Master of Arts in instructional and curriculum design from the University of Phoenix.