I am often called upon to repair the damage that has been done by "Piano Movers" that clearly didn't know what they were doing. Usually it's a broken leg on a small upright. Sometimes it's a deep scratch in a high-gloss polyester finish caused by improper wrapping. Sometimes the movers get the piano to the right house without any overt damage, but then put the piano back together wrong so something doesn't work right -- usually the sustain pedal. How can you avoid these scenarios when you have YOUR piano moved? Here are a few tips:
1. Get a referral from a local piano store. Piano stores usually have a few local movers that have good reputations in their rolodex. local piano stores in the area and ask them who they use to deliver their pianos. But don't ask the piano store to set up the move for you. Some get a piece of the action for the referral and jack up the price accordingly.
2. When you talk to the mover, ask them what kind of equipment they have for moving pianos. They should immediately qualify your question by asking if the piano is a grand or an upright. If it's a grand piano, they should say that they have a SKIDBOARD. If they do, ask them "What size is it?" as skidboards come in 6,7, and 8 foot sizes, each according to the length of the piano.
3. Pick a mover that regularly moves pianos and knows how to wrap them up correctly. And by all means, take a short video of the piano before they pick it up as an insurance policy against any claims you may need to make if they damage the piano in transit.
4. Ask if they are insured. Also, find out if they are insured for not only moving the piano but transporting it as well. If you have doubts, ask for their insurance card or the name of their carrier and contact them. Granted, if you are only transporting grandma's favorite spinet you may not need to know, but if it's a $100,000 grand...