Piano Removal & Disposal Service: Comprehensive Guide

Need to get rid of an old, unwanted piano from your home? That’s music to our ears. Rubbish.com has man and van rubbish clearance teams operating across the UK that can help remove a piano from your property, including dismantling and disposing of the piano as well as removing any other unwanted rubbish. For all of the classy Casablanca “play it again, Sam” elegance of a piano as a statement piece, as well as the pure joy and entertainment that a piano can provide in a home, you may someday need to get rid of an old piano from your home.

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Piano removal & disposal services UK

Moving a piano and disposing of it can be an awfully complex and challenging task, often caricatured in children’s cartoons with precariously dangling pianos falling from pulleys onto someone’s head.
In reality, moving a piano can indeed be complex, but rest assured that Rubbish.com has rubbish removal companies nearby that can safely remove a piano from your property and dispose of it in a cost-efficient and environmentally friendly manner.

Piano disposal service near you

Some pianos are relatively small, such as portable digital or electric pianos, but many others are much harder to dispose of. Grand pianos, upright pianos, square pianos, console pianos, spinet pianos and many other types of pianos often require substantial manpower and equipment to safely move out of a home, and in many cases dismantling is required.

Rubbish.com has licensed waste carriers capable of assisting with all manner of piano removal and disposal in the UK.

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Piano removal: questions people commonly ask

How do I get rid of a piano for free in the UK?

If you are capable of safely removing the piano from your home, you may be able to give it away for free to friends or family members. Many charities such as Oxfam and The British Heart Foundation accept musical instruments, but this may not include large and bulky instruments such as pianos.

If your piano is very old and can be considered an antique, you may be able to give it away to an antique shop or even sell it.

Why do so many people give pianos away for free?

People give away pianos for free for many reasons, but two of the biggest reasons are:

  • The cost of moving a piano from one home to another can be prohibitively high
  • Used pianos generally have little to no value, with the rare exception of antique pianos

Many homeowners do not feel that it is worth paying to have a piano moved and may struggle to find a buyer for a used piano and subsequently give the piano away for free.

Who takes old pianos in the UK?

Some individuals may be willing to take an old piano in the UK, such as homeowners looking for a decorative statement piece or admirers of antique furniture and household items.

Old pianos can be sold or given away on online marketplaces such as Gumtree or Facebook Marketplace, however you should endeavour to ask any potential buyers about collecting and hauling the piano since these costs can be high if you require assistance moving the piano.

Why are old pianos free?

Old pianos are often free because pianos tend to depreciate in value quickly and, with the rare exception of antique pianos, hold relatively little to no value when considering the cost of moving the piano.

Furthermore, many pianos are inherited as heirlooms to families that perhaps may have little interest in the piano. This often means that the piano goes without maintenance or care and thus a burden to remove.

What can I do with an old upright piano?

Old upright pianos that are still in reasonable condition that can be tuned may have some value to others in your community or on online marketplaces such as Facebook Marketplace or Gumtree. If the piano is from the WWII era, it may be considered an antique and be worth a substantial amount to collectors.

If the upright piano is in poor condition and is not an antique, however, it likely has little to no value and it may be best to give it away for free or to simply pay a rubbish clearance company near you to remove and dispose of it.

Is there a market for old pianos?

There is a fairly large market for old, second-hand pianos so long as they are in reasonable condition and can be refurbished and restored. Many pianos made from quality materials using quality craftsmanship can last for well over 40 years so long as they are well-maintained, thus making them fairly popular for certain homeowners and collectors alike.

Although there is demand for old pianos, one must always consider the cost of moving the piano, which can be quite expensive. If you are willing to pay for moving the piano to your property, you may be able to negotiate for bargain prices for old pianos.

Are very old pianos worth anything?

Very old pianos can either have little to no value or be worth a substantial amount, depending on whether or not the piano is an antique that can be restored or not. Most pianos older than 40 years have very little value due to the cost of moving the piano.

Moreover, very old pianos tend to be subjected to substantial wear and tear, leading to degradation of the wood and wires of the piano. If these components can be restored by an avid owner, the piano may be worth purchasing.

Do charity shops take pianos?

Most charities in the UK accept musical instruments for donation, however this typically means smaller instruments such as keyboards, guitars, flutes, and violins, for example. Check with local charities to see if they would be willing to collect your old piano.

Some music departments at schools or churches as well as nursing homes may benefit from having a piano and may be willing to collect the piano from your property.

How much does it cost to dispose of a piano?

The cost to dispose of a piano in the UK can vary from approximately £130 to £250 or more, depending on the size and weight of the piano and the amount of labour required.

Large, heavy pianos may need to be dismantled in order to safely remove them from a property, and in some cases may need to be moved up or down multiple flights of stairs, which can further increase the cost of piano removal.

How do you dispose of an old upright piano?

Old upright pianos can be disposed of in various ways such as offering the piano for free to friends or family members, selling the piano online or through community groups, or disposing of the piano yourself or with the assistance of a rubbish clearance team.

Some charities in the UK may be willing to accept old upright pianos if they can be restored, which can be an excellent way to have the piano removed from your property and given to a good cause. School youth groups and music departments may be willing to take your piano as can many churches.

How do I give away a piano near me?

Giving away an unwanted piano can be challenging, even if the piano is given away for free. Nevertheless, you may be able to donate the piano to local charities or through community groups to individuals willing to collect and move the piano. Many churches and music schools and school music departments may also be willing to collect your unwanted piano.

For many piano owners, the simplest answer is to hire a rubbish clearance company collect and remove an unwanted piano, but it is worth attempting to give it away for free first.

Are pianos hard to get rid of?

Getting rid of a piano can be complex and challenging, especially if they are heavy or awkwardly sized. While small pianos and upright pianos might be moved with two or more people, larger grand pianos may require multiple people and equipment to move.

To get rid of a piano safely and without damaging your property, it is essential to choose a qualified rubbish clearance company that is adequately insured and has the manpower, equipment, and experience in removing pianos from properties.

What to do with an old piano no one wants?

Some of the best ways to get rid of an old piano that no one wants include contacting local school music departments and churches, charities, or antique collectors if your piano is indeed an antique. Some of these may be willing to collect your old piano from your property and put it to good use.

Although there is demand for used pianos in the UK, buyers are often unwilling to pay the cost of moving the piano to their property which can be quite expensive. For piano owners in need of quick and affordable piano removal, consider contacting a local rubbish removal company.

What can be recycled from a piano?

Most pianos can be partially recycled since they contain materials such as wood, scrap metal, plastic, and fabrics which can be recycled. The wooden frame of a piano can be recycled into high-quality furniture, whereas the thin wooden boards may be recyclable as wood chip mulch.

Older pianos often used ivory-coated keys that cannot be recycled and cannot be resold easily due to new ivory being illegal and ivory being taboo in the UK.

Is there scrap metal in a piano?

Most pianos, new and old, have recyclable scrap metal components such as the strings and tuning pins, some of the hardware, and the cast iron or aluminium plate. Piano strings are commonly wrapped in copper which can be recycled.

The cast iron plate used to structurally support the piano’s frame can be recycled and typically weighs half the total weight of the piano or more. Some older pianos used aluminium plates which can likewise be recycled.

Do pianos lose value with age?

Pianos tend to lose value sharply within the first 10 years of ownership and gradually thereafter at around 2 per cent per year. Generally, most pianos tend to have little to no value after around 40 years.
Unless the piano has sentimental value or can be considered an antique, it may be challenging to get rid of an old piano since many piano buyers prefer new over used and the cost of moving an old piano may not be cost-effective unless the piano can be purchased for very little or given away for free.

Why are old upright pianos so heavy?

Old upright pianos tend to be heavy because of the types of materials used in their construction, especially if the piano has a cast iron plate to hold the tension of the strings in place. Indeed, these plates often weigh about half of the total weight of the piano or more.

Upright pianos weigh approximately:

  • Spinet pianos: 130-230 kg
  • Console pianos: 180-270 kg
  • Studio pianos: 230-360 kg
  • Full-sized upright pianos: 270-400 kg

What is the average lifespan of a piano?

Pianos may last for around 50 years or longer depending on the quality of craftsmanship and materials, how well the piano is maintained and cared for, and the environmental conditions it is exposed to. Humidity and moisture can degrade the wood, felt, and strings inside of the piano.

A well-maintained piano of superb craftsmanship can last well over a century. So long as the piano is kept tuned and repaired as needed, a high-quality piano could last well beyond a century.