The piano bench is often ignored, but an incredibly important component to your piano. Besides the keys and pedals, it's the only other part of the piano that the pianist makes contact with continually. A good bench can help you achieve the correct posture and seating height, and can provide a comfortable, solid foundation that supports the pianist. A proper piano bench will remain silent and motionless despite the shifting of weight as the pianist moves around and transfers energy to the keys. A creaking, wobbly bench is very annoying, and possibly unsafe. We've tuned pianos for hundreds of clients and we've noticed that many piano owners suffer needlessly with benches that are simply not up to the task.
If your piano bench is slowly driving you insane, don't despair! The first thing you should do is grab your screwdrivers and wrench, and tighten every nut, bolt and screw you can find. For most upright or storage benches, opening the lid will usually reveal four nuts that can be tightened to secure the threaded studs protruding from each leg. In many cases, just tightening these four nuts will make things much better. But don't stop there - you should also see a number of screws that secure the leg brackets to the frame, as well as screws holding the lid hinges in place. Make sure all of these screws are tight. For benches without a lid (grand artist benches, for instance), you will likely need to turn the bench upside-down to reveal the various fasteners. Tightening all screws and nuts can often restore your noisy, wobbling bench to a much better state of performance. Some older benches have a lot of glue joints, and these joints often become loose over time. Repairing a bench with loose glue joints is more complicated, requiring wood glue, clamps, and possibly shims (small bits of wood) to wedge into the glue joints to create a tight fit where the wood has shrunk over time.
If your bench is still not making you happy, it's time to replace it, and that's where we can help you. Pianogoods offers a variety of benches from economy benches, all the way up to the Jansen Artist Bench that you are likely to find at many concert and symphony venues. You will notice that the pricing on benches varies considerably. You may see two benches that are similar in appearance, yet one costs four times as much. Some benches are more expensive to manufacture because of more durable framing, fastening components and adjuster mechanisms. As they say, "You get what you pay for." If you are shopping for a bench, we recommend placing a higher priority on quality so that you will have a sturdy bench that will provide many years of solid, silent, comfortable service.