Benefits of Buying a Used Piano

Maybe your darling daughter (and budding prodigy) has finally pushed you hard enough, and you want to buy her the piano of her dreams, so she can light up your home with beautiful music. Or maybe you’re looking for an instrument to sharpen your concert skills in preparation for a recital or recording effort.

Irrespective of your purpose, you face an urgent decision: Should you buy a new or used piano.

There are lots of good reasons to buy new. And we will delve into those in separate blog posts.

But reasons to consider the “oldie but goodie” option also abound. Consider:

1. Aesthetic Appeal.

Some “old school” pianos – particularly those engineered and built by master craftsmen – look absolutely gorgeous. If you plan to practice in a private studio – where no one typically visits – this design factor might not mean as much. But if you’re buying a piano for your living room (e.g. to use entertain guests), aesthetics matter.

2. Affordable.

In today’s strapped economy, musicians (in particular) are desperate to save where they can. If you are a sharp bargain hunter, you can find a very solid, extremely reasonably priced used piano – provided you do due diligence.

3. Easy.

You need not go to piano tuner school to learn how to choose the best instrument for your needs.

By following a few, easy to remember heuristics (rules of thumb), you can make your piano shopping far easier. For instance, memorize this one: “bigger is better.” Bigger pianos last longer and yield up more depth of sound. Small pianos can create a tinny sound, due to the high harmonics created when the shorter strings get hit.

Testing the Piano

To test a used piano, start with the bass section, since the bass is the first to wear out in old pianos. But just because a piano is three decades older (or even older) doesn’t mean that the bass sections will disappoint.

You should also examine: hammers (to make sure they are not too worn) tuning pins overall condition of the piano.

Getting Help

Perhaps the most important element is a good guide. At Pianos Plus, we sell both used pianos and new pianos – so we have no intrinsic bias either way.

We can help you find the right instrument for your needs, budget, and other values you hold.

We’ve been an East Bay Area piano leader for nearly four decades, and our knowledgeable and professional staff can walk you through your questions and concerns – call us now at 510-581-1660 or visit