Frequently Asked Questions

Check our list below to see if your question has already been answered.

If not, call us on (09) 440 9565 and we'd be happy to help.

Piano Tuning

We recommend, as piano manufacturers do, that pianos be tuned twice a year, although some of our customers find once a year sufficient. If a piano is being used frequently, more regular tunings will allow us to refine the tuning. Pianos should always be tuned prior to concerts and important performances.

Pianos which have not been tuned for a number of years often drop in pitch. If this is the case with your piano, it will require pitch-raising to re-establish the correct pitch (a1440) before it can be tuned. There is an additional charge for this. If a piano has been unused, it will commonly need additional work to make it serviceable again.

How do I book a tuning?

Please phone Charlotte: (09) 440-9565
Or email us at charlotte@jenkinpiano.co.nz

What does tuning cost?

Tunings in metropolitan Auckland cost $160 inc GST. There are additional travel charges for pitch raising (often necessary if pianos have not been tuned regularly) and tuning in out-lying suburbs.

What is the best position for my piano?

A stable environment is best for your piano. Frequent moves and extremes of humidity and/or temperature will make tunings unstable and can permanently damage some components of your piano. Excessive humidity can swell timber and felt, causing sluggish mechanisms and keys which stick. Excessive dryness will split timber, break glue joints and cause loose, noisy mechanisms.

Avoid: damp, draughts, direct sunlight, windows and doors, close proximity to fires, heaters, central heating vents, underfloor heating and radiators. A Dampp-Chaser®, Piano Life Saver System can help create a stable environment for your piano. Having your piano in a poor position or environment will cause problems, tuning instability and, may void a warranty. 

I'm moving house, how do I shift my piano?

Do not attempt to move the piano yourself. The risk of injuring yourself and damaging the piano is simply too great. We strongly recommend:

  • In Auckland, Atutolu Piano Movers 09 360 2423
  • In Wellington and for piano movements long haul, Amoova 050 8008 050 www.amoova.com

Is my piano covered by house and contents insurance?

Many household insurance policies require musical instruments over a specified value to be notified. It's worth checking that your piano is covered.

I have been told to avoid overdamper pianos as they are an antiquated, poor design, and frequently unserviceable. How do I recognise them?

Here are two photos. The first is an overdamper (to be avoided) and second, a conventional underdamper.

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Pianos do not improve with age. While the very best quality instruments have a long useful life, we are frequently called to tune, repair or service old, poor quality, unserviceable or decrepit pianos. Here is a list of pianos that fall into one or more of these categories. Often these pianos change hands for just a few dollars on trademe, the owners have discovered that it will cost to have them removed. Please do not donate these pianos to a school, church or kindergarten. You are simply passing on a problem.

 

Pianos to avoid:  
Allison                           commonly over-dampers
Arthur Allison                  commonly over-dampers
Atwater Kent poor quality
Bell                              poor tone
Bently  poor tone, poor quality
Bishop  poor tuning planks
Bishop Stirling  poor tuning planks
Blessing poor quality
Böhm mostly very old overdamper
Brinsmead  Older instruments may be overdamper
Bruns - Berlin  old, un-tuneable, usually over damper
Broadwood  Older instruments my be overdampers, Recent Asian manufacture poor quality 
Carl Ecke  very old, poor quality
Carmen  poor quality
Chas Begg  too old.
Danemann  avoid small  ones
Fritz Kuhla  bad tuning planks
Gors & Kahlmann  dodgy tuning planks / over dampers
Haake Hannover  older ones commonly over-dampers
Hamilton  poor quality
Horugel  poor quality
Hsinghai  poor quality
Hupfeld  regulation problems, very poor quality
Humphrey Poor quality
Jensen More  tuning plank problems
John Spencer  older ones commonly over-dampers
Justin Browne  very poor quality
Kirchner poor quality overdamper
Koch & Soehne  some have tuning plank problems
Leswein very old, often over dampers, practically untunable
Liederstrom Unreparable plastic parts
Lindner  Unreparable plastic parts
Mercedes  probably the worst piano ever built ( see Trebel )
Metzler  
Mozart Who knows?
Nieer  poor quality
Pearl River poor quality
Ramsperger  poor bridges and tuning planks
Schreiber  poor quality tone, poor sound-boards
Schubert  over-dampers
Silvester  
Spencer  Older instruments may be overdamper
Strobech Very small marginal quality
Stanley Brinsmead commonly have damper problems
Storey & Clark  poor quality
Strauss  very poor quality
Trebel  trouble, probably the worst piano ever built
Verdi  poor quality
Waldberg  
Walter Collinson  older ones are over-dampers, poor soundboards, poor damping
Washburn  
Werner  
Whitney  poor quality
Whitney  poor quality