Do You Tip A Piano Tuner? [What to Consider]

In our article How Long Does It Take To Tune A Piano [What to Expect], we provide the information you need about tuning a piano. You may also wonder if you need to tip a piano tuner.

There are no rules about tipping a piano tuner. Some say it is not customary, and some feel the need to tip. I would say it depends on the situation and your comfort level.

In this post, we explore a few common scenarios.

When Do You Tip a Piano Tuner?

Tuning a piano regularly is an essential part of piano maintenance. In general, it is not customary to tip the piano tuner. However, there are several situations in which you may want to consider tipping the technician.

Emergency Situation

Normally, it is a good practice to schedule piano tuning 1 to 2 weeks ahead of time. However, emergencies may arise, for instance, a broken key right before a scheduled performance. For an emergency appointment, the piano technician has to reschedule his or her appointments with other clients.

Most customers in this situation will tip the technician for his or her trouble rescheduling.

Go Above and Beyond to Help You

Sometimes, a piano technician goes out of his or her way for you, such as getting discounted parts, adding a little voicing regulation, easing some sticking keys, or cleaning the inside of the piano. Other times, the technician may not have quoted the extra work during the estimation.

Recognizing the effort and tipping the technician would be a good gesture in these situations.

New Piano May Come With Post-Sale Service or Tuning

piano showroom

Even expensive pianos are not often at their optimum when they are sitting on the showroom floor. It is always beneficial to negotiate post-sale service or tuning. Usually, these services are provided by the store in terms of the number of hours. For example, you may get free tuning or 5 to 10 hours of free services, including some voicing, refined regulation, etc. All these types of services should be negotiated before the sale.

When the store technician comes to wherever the piano is located, at home, school, music hall, church, etc., to service the piano, you may consider tipping the technician, especially when he or she performs extra work beyond the warranty tuning.

How Much Do You Tip a Piano Tuner?

If you are comfortable with the technician’s work, a 10% tip is appreciated.

Since the tuning process could be 1-2 hours or longer, sometimes the work gets into lunch hours; hence, many customers voluntarily provide coffee, snacks, or lunch for the tuner as a courtesy.


While it is not customary to tip a piano tuner since the price reflects the service level, it is truly a personal choice. There are several factors to consider when you decide to tip:

  • Your appreciation of the tuner
  • Does the technician work at a discounted rate?
  • Does the tuner do any substantial extra work?
  • Is the tuning under purchase warranty?

Generally, piano tuners are professionals. They have gone through some tough training, and many are certified by the Piano Technicians Guild, which means they have passed a series of rigorous examinations on the maintenance, repair, and tuning of pianos. Nevertheless, they deserve respect and are paid fairly for their work.

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