Pianos should be tuned a minimum of once a year. For more information, read our section on “why a piano goes out of tune”.
Often if pianos have not been tuned for many years, they will go flat in pitch to the extent that the tuner will have to tune the instrument twice. This is called a “pitch raise”. There is no fast way to do a pitch raise. On the first tuning, the strings are raised a calculated amount above normal pitch. This is done to allow for stretch. Then the piano is ‘fine’ tuned to make it stay at proper pitch. All pianos should be tuned to the standard A440. This means that the A 4th octave should vibrate at 440 cycles per second. The only exceptions to this are older pianos that cannot take the strain. These are usually tuned at A435 or lower depending upon the condition of the piano.