How to Clean Piano Keys

Unless your piano is badly stained, you don’t need help of an expert to clean its keys. However, it’s important to note that harsh sprays and chemicals can damage the keys of your piano and make the instrument look worn out and older than it actually is. That’s why you should know how to clean piano keys safely.

Here are the steps for cleaning piano keys:

Step 1: Create a cleansing solution

Start the process of cleaning your piano keys by preparing a mild cleansing solution. Make the solution by mixing one or two drops of a mild dishwashing liquid with slightly warm water. Note that you should not use a detergent that has harsh chemicals like sulfites and alcohol. Mild dish soap is the recommended piano keys cleaning product.

Step 2: Dip a clean, soft cloth in the cleaning solution and wring it out thoroughly

Basically, you should clean your piano keys with a damp cloth because a wet cloth can let water seep between the piano keys and eventually damage the internal parts of the instrument. Remember that though the keys of your piano seem strong, they are very sensitive to touch and change. Thus, they are as vulnerable as the internal parts of your piano. It’s therefore recommended that you clean the keys with a white cloth to prevent their discoloration by the dye of the garment.

Step 3: Clean white keys

Use the damp cloth to brush down all white keys from the back of the keyboard to its front. Avoid sideway wiping because this will transfer dirt and moisture between keys. Also don’t wipe the keys backward because this will push dirt and moisture behind the piano keys.

Step 4: Clean black keys

Use a different white cloth to wipe black keys. Use the same back to front motion to clean the black piano keys.

Step 5: Use a clean, dry cloth to wipe off soap residue

Don’t leave the piano with the cleaning solution. Instead, use a white, dry cloth to wipe it off. Again, wipe the keys in a back to front motion. Make sure that nothing gets between the piano keys.

Step 6: Remove your fingerprints

You need a different treatment to remove your fingerprints from the keys. Prepare a solution of one part vinegar and four parts water. Dip a soft, clean, white cloth into this solution and wring it thoroughly. Wipe every key individually and dry it. Before moving to another key, ensure that the previous key is completely dry. Note that you should do this quickly because vinegar will damage piano keys if you leave it on them for too long. Don’t rush to cover the piano keys. Instead, leave them uncovered for a day to allow the smell of vinegar to dissipate.

Step 7: Cover the piano keys

Always cover your piano when it’s not being played. This prevents dust from building up thereby minimizing the need to clean it more often.

Tips: How to Clean Piano Keys Perfectly

Your piano keys are bound to get soiled with time. That’s because skin oils and sweaty hands make dirt and dust bind to the keys with ease. Actually, frequently used keys are more vulnerable and without cleaning, their nice-looking, polished surfaces become worn down. This allows dirt to enter into their pores with ease. To prevent this, wash hands before you play the piano and clean the keys as it deems necessary.

Properly cleaned piano keys feel and look nice. However, you should be careful to ensure that you don’t damage your instrument while cleaning its keys. Ideally, you should dust your piano regularly but use a mild solution to clean its keys occasionally and wipe fingerprints with vinegar. Talk to a professional cleaner about stubborn stains.

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