What Causes Piano Strings To Break

What Causes Piano Strings To Break? How Often Do They Break?

What causes the piano strings to break? How often do piano strings break? How long do piano strings last? If your piano strings break or you are worried that your strings will fail you in the near future, we are going to find out the reasons why your piano strings break that you should look into to avoid or protect your piano strings from breaking easily.

Why Piano Strings Break

So, what causes the piano strings to break? Here are some of the primary reasons why piano strings break:


One of the main reasons why piano strings just break on their own is because of age. Just like any other stringed musical instrument, there will come a time when their strings will also break due to age. This is a typical scenario, so you won’t have to worry about it, as everything will end. The question is just when it would happen.

If your piano is already 30 or 50 years old, you should expect that more and more of its parts will start to fail, including its strings. There will be a time that it will break on you, especially if you play with it on a regular basis. The piano strings will also break faster if the piano is used all the time. If one starts to break, maybe you already start considering replacing them all, as you will have to expect that more and more strings will start to break, also.

Wear And Tear

Wear and tear are one of the most common reasons why a musical instrument will fail you; however, it is also one of the most expected things, as there will come a time when you will have to replace a significant part of your musical instrument or maybe even the musical instrument itself. This is also the same for the piano strings; the more you will use and play with the piano, the more you will put wear and tear to your strings.

As you put more miles on the piano strings, you are also getting closer to replacing them. Do not worry about it, as there will be a time when you will replace them all, so you have to think of it as your responsibility as the piano’s owner, and do not think of it as a burden to you.

Defective Or Low-Quality Piano Strings

The third reason why your piano strings broke is that your piano comes with a set of defective strings. Although pianos can be very expensive, not all of them are of high quality, so when buying one, you have to be very careful and must choose a piano that has many positive reviews, especially when it comes to the durability of its parts, as replacing new piano strings can also be costly.

If you have already replaced your piano strings and it still breaks, then maybe the strings you or your technician have installed are defective or of low quality. As much as possible, do not settle for cheap parts, as they are known to be of lower quality compared to other and higher-priced piano strings. Although this is not always true, it is still a typical scenario on the market. If you hire a technician to replace your strings, always instruct to use high-quality materials, as it will help you save more in the long run.

Aggressive Playing Of The Piano

If you thought that it is only in other musical instruments and not on pianos that aggressive playing exists, then you are wrong. Although pianos are designed to withstand the effects of aggressive playing, they can only take so much more, which can be why your strings break as fast as you’d expect. Piano strings can hold up to 150 pounds of tension, so when a piano string breaks, you are playing with too much force.

Although some pieces require you to be aggressive in playing the piano, it is rare that the piano strings would break due to it unless it is already old and needs to be replaced before it breaks on you. So, if a piano string breaks on you, maybe you should assess yourself to see if you are pushing yourself too hard or not.

Poor Installation Of Piano Strings

If you have already replaced it with a new set of piano strings and it still breaks quickly, then one of the possible reasons is they are installed poorly. If you installed it on your own to save money, then maybe you should highly consider hiring a piano technician, as they have more experience installing them than you have. Replacing piano strings is also not an easy task, so there is no chance that you can learn them overnight.

If you are planning to hire a piano technician, make sure they have the necessary experience to execute the job. Ensure they also use the proper equipment and high-quality piano strings to avoid replacing them quickly, as these things can be very expensive. I believe there are already a handful of piano technicians offering their services out there, so always research which of them can give you the service you deserve.

Temperature Control And Physical Contact

As pianos are known to be highly sensitive to sudden changes in temperature, you always try to protect them by being able to control the room temperature in where they are placed. Too much humidity can cause your strings to get rusty, so they must be regulated at their standard to avoid damaging your piano and strings in the long run. As humidity can be an important factor in adequately maintaining your musical instrument, you should be able to have control of the temperature, as this will extend your gear’s playing life.

Frequent touching of the piano strings can also do more damage to them than being able to help you in the long run. As our fingers and hands usually have oils that can be damaging to metal parts such as your piano strings, touching your piano strings will leave some trace of these oils, which, if left uncleaned, can damage your strings, as they are now more prone to rust and corrosion.

As it starts to rust and corrode, its metal will also start to oxidize, resulting in your piano strings breaking quicker than expected. This is why it is never a good idea to touch your piano strings, as replacing them can also be very costly.

How Often Do Piano Strings Break?

So, how often do piano strings break? How long do piano strings last? Typically, piano strings can last up to 30 years before you will need to replace them. However, if you have improperly taken care of your piano, then there is a high possibility that your piano strings will break faster than you’d expect. If the piano strings are already rusty, maybe you do not have to wait for them to break before replacing them, as they can be a hassle, and it would take time to replace them with a new set of strings.

So, what causes the piano strings to break? There are many things that could be the reason why a piano string would break. Maybe it is of age, wear and tear, poor installation, low quality, rust and corrosion, frequent touching of the strings, defective, aggressive playing, or poor thermal management.