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I've just bought a second hand piano and one of the Ds of the left part sounds totally disaccorded. It hasn't been tuned yet but I feel very worried. Is it okay for one of the keys to sound like that before tuning?

My brother thinks the left side of the piano sounds slightly out of tune altogether

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Even if it was perfectly in tune at the time and place you bought it, by the time it's been moved somewhere else - different temperature differential, different humidity, and the fact that physically it's been moved, it's bound to be out. If you'd noticed the D out before you paid for it, that could have been a bargaining point. Too late now!

Wait a few weeks for it to settle in, then get it tuned professionally. The guy will sort out the problem, which is likely to be just those two strings. A 'sound cloud' may give us more clues.

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If you play one key and hear two separate pitches that's a red flag for a loose tuning pin on one of the "unison" strings. It could mean that string isn't "tune-able" but that's not the end of the world, as there are often things your tuner can do to restore friction in to the tuning pin.

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You don't expect a piano (new or second-hand) to be in tune when delivered. Let it settle down, then have it tuned. If some notes WON'T hold in tune, then start worrying.

This is why it is sensible to send a tuner to look at a piano BEFORE you buy it. He can tell you if it just needs tuning or if there are problems, and how much it will cost to fix them.

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