Here in Ohio, the winter snow is finally upon us! We were spoiled with an extraordinarily mild December, and only recently have have had a few inches of snow actually staying on the ground for more than a few days without melting.
The snowy weather outside means, of course, that the air gets very dry indoors. The old radiators in our home are running almost constantly! As a recent first-time piano owner, last week I decided I should buy a hygrometer to see just how low the humidity is getting in our home, for the sake of my piano. I ordered this hygrometer from Amazon and it arrived just a couple of days later (love that). I was shocked, however, to find that the humidity in my studio was under 20%! Not good.
My parents’ piano had a Dampp-Chaser “Piano Life Saver” system installed on it to help with the extreme humidity changes that Michiganders typically experience as part of the Midwest’s highly distinctive four seasons. Having one of these systems installed on my Kawai isn’t an option financially at this point, so I’m doing my best to figure out how I can keep the humidity more stable by other means even if they aren’t as convenient.
So, I started doing more research about humidity levels and pianos. I found a multitude of information available online. Here’s just a few articles:
Basically, I learned that I need to keep the humidity between 30-45% if possible. So I got out my humidifier from the attic. The last few days, I’ve been successful in keeping the humidity level right around 30%. I do think that my piano’s tuning is a little bit better now that the humidity is closer to where it should be.
This is all new territory for me. If you have tips or suggestions for maintaining a constant humidity level, leave a message in the comments below!
(By the way, I would highly recommend the hygrometer mentioned above to anyone looking for one. It not only shows the current humidity level and temperature in the room, but it also records the highest and lowest humidity and temperature levels taken throughout the day. There’s a magnet on the back, or it can also sit quite nicely on any flat surface.)