In response to the continuing concerns relating to the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak, the Piano Technicians Guild has compiled the following advisory. Hopefully, you will find it helpful.
Advisory: COVID-19 and Consumer Piano Care
The Corona Virus (COVID-19) is having a major impact throughout the world and that includes the world of music teachers and piano owners. The Piano Technicians Guild is making the following suggestions.
1. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has specific tips for preparation, protection and care. You can view this information at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
2. Special care should be taken when using disinfectant products on a piano. Our thanks to Greg Cheng, RPT, for his invaluable assistance in developing these recommendations.
• Generally speaking, a soft disposable towel, using warm water and hand/dish soap is safe to use on virtually every finish, key, and case parts. Always follow up with a dry soft disposable towel to dry any standing liquid. Cheng recommends the Wypall L30 disposable towel.
• Cleaning pianos is a gentle process not a scrubbing process. Pressing hard or vigorous scrubbing may lead to scratching or removing the finish. Always proceed with caution and use common sense. Remember to wash your hands after you have thrown away the towels.
If using disinfectant products
• Use alcohol-based disinfectants, do not use bleach-based disinfectants or any product containing citrus.
• If using a spray or liquid bottle, use a disposable towel like WYPALL L30. Put the disinfectant on the towel and not the piano.
• After use, immediately put the towel or disinfectant hand wipe in the trash and wash your hands as the CDC recommends. Do not use reusable towels or cloths.
• Always follow up with a dry towel and never leave any liquids on the piano or keys.
The keys are the most important part. Generally speaking, most disinfecting wipes or sprays (see General Recommendations) should be safe to use on the keys.
Case parts finishes vary greatly and can be easily damaged by disinfectant wipes and sprays. A soft disposable towel, using warm water and hand/dish soap is safe to use on virtually every finish, key, and case parts. Always follow up with a dry soft disposable towel to dry any standing liquid.
Again, cleaning pianos is a gentle process not a scrubbing process. Pressing hard or vigorous scrubbing may lead to scratching or removing the finish. Always proceed with caution and use common sense. Remember to wash your hands after you have thrown away the towels or wipes.
Our thanks to Shawn Bruce at The Piano Technicians Guild for distributing this advisory.
The Piano Technicians Guild is a leading source of piano service expertise. It promotes the highest possible standards of piano service by providing opportunities for professional development, by recognizing technical competence through examinations and by advancing the interests of its members.
Gregory Cheng is a Registered Piano Technician. He is currently the General Manager and Chief Technician for Allied Piano & Finish LLC, Warrington, Pennsylvania, USA.
Photo: Schimmel C121 Tradition Marketerie
There is also a smoke machine based disinfectant that can be used in the whole room the piano is in thus killing two birds with one stone the room and everything in it gets disinfected this eliminates use of any liquids 👍👍😎😎🎹🎹
Probably not a great idea to “fog” a bunch of chemicals. Formaldehyde is a common chemical with these systems. Would worry about residues and other consequences.
How about UV sanitizing wands? Can these be used safely on the keys? We are in a college environment where not everyone is careful about keeping wipes from touching the finish of the pianos, and we are starting to see issues.