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Originally Posted by LarryK
I simply do not have the time to monitor and try to maintain the humidity of the house, or of the room where the piano is located, especially with a forced air furnace.
If you have a forced air furnace, you could install a central humidifier.
I never appreciated what was inside of a disklavier system until I saw your photos. No wonder they're so expensive, that adds a lot of labor.


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Originally Posted by LarryK
My experience with humidifiers was that they were not set and forget. ... I had a Venta humidifier to maintain the humidity in a small bedroom in order to protect my expensive classical guitars and it was always something that I had to keep an eye on and monitor.
I agree the humidistats on most humidifiers are not very good, but a programmable controller will solve this issue. I use this controller , it turns on/off either my humdifier or dehumidifier depending on what's needed. It has a humidistat on a long cable, I hang mine under my soundboard, you could put it between the wall and your soundboard for example. It can be set to turn on/off for any ranges you want.


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Originally Posted by MarkL
Originally Posted by LarryK
I simply do not have the time to monitor and try to maintain the humidity of the house, or of the room where the piano is located, especially with a forced air furnace.
If you have a forced air furnace, you could install a central humidifier.
I never appreciated what was inside of a disklavier system until I saw your photos. No wonder they're so expensive, that adds a lot of labor.

From past experience, putting a humidifier on a furnace tends to rust the duct work, develops leaks, and stops working after a few years. Plus, the filters have to be changed quite often, as they get plugged up. Filters have to be changed on the Dampp Chaser as well.

I think you need a large humidifier to humidify a 1000 square foot living space. I'm hoping that the Dampp Chaser will be easier and require less maintenance.

Thanks for the link to the controller. I'll keep it in mind if I go in that direction.

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Good luck with that. I've asked Bösendorfer if they would recommend installing a damp chaser twice while at their factory. Both times they said absolutely not it will destroy your piano by drilling a hole through the soundboard. I'm sticking with their expertise and am very happy using a humidifier in the winter. Bösendorfer is part of the Yamaha group now. Maybe you could ask someone at Yamaha what they recommend? A "great technician" makes lots of money installing damp chasers by the way. Maybe an independent opinion would be better.

Last edited by Lakeviewsteve; 10/22/20 08:38 PM.

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Larry, I totally agree with you! See my comment above. Steve


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Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by K8KT
I don’t have any personal experience with it, but I was told by a Dampp Chaser person that the back system is the one for uprights with a player system inside in order to keep the bucket and the rod away from other electronics. The existing hole seems large enough to feed all the cables to be plugged into the humidistat inside the piano, but you could bring in your tech for a fit check. I wouldn’t personally worry too much about a new hole if needed.

Yes, I suppose the worst case is that a hole has to be drilled in the bottom of the piano. My tech has been over to measure things and puzzle out a way to make the system fit into the piano. Someone at Yamaha had told my tech that they had tried to put the system into a DYUS5 but gave up. It's not an easy job but I think it can be made to work.

Should I worry at all about having the buckets of water and heating rods near the power supply on the back of the piano? I suppose power supplies have to operate under different levels of humidity, so maybe it is not a big deal.

That's crazy. Do you mean the manufacturer of the damp chaser doesn't have specific instructions for your piano / model? Your technician has to figure out the puzzle? Wow that sounds risky and after it breaks down with chemicals and filter problems what will you do?


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Originally Posted by K8KT
I thought there are portable room humidifiers with humidistat on the market. Seems like the same idea as Dampp Chaser in terms of care and feeding (watering).

I have two humidistats from Amazon at $10 each. I have two to make sure they agree. Not rocket science like this discussion has gotten to from the OP. Plus my humidifier has a built in humidistat it uses to go on and off with based on what I set it to.

Last edited by Lakeviewsteve; 10/22/20 08:46 PM.

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Originally Posted by Lakeviewsteve
Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by K8KT
I don’t have any personal experience with it, but I was told by a Dampp Chaser person that the back system is the one for uprights with a player system inside in order to keep the bucket and the rod away from other electronics. The existing hole seems large enough to feed all the cables to be plugged into the humidistat inside the piano, but you could bring in your tech for a fit check. I wouldn’t personally worry too much about a new hole if needed.

Yes, I suppose the worst case is that a hole has to be drilled in the bottom of the piano. My tech has been over to measure things and puzzle out a way to make the system fit into the piano. Someone at Yamaha had told my tech that they had tried to put the system into a DYUS5 but gave up. It's not an easy job but I think it can be made to work.

Should I worry at all about having the buckets of water and heating rods near the power supply on the back of the piano? I suppose power supplies have to operate under different levels of humidity, so maybe it is not a big deal.

That's crazy. Do you mean the manufacturer of the damp chaser doesn't have specific instructions for your piano / model? Your technician has to figure out the puzzle? Wow that sounds risky and after it breaks down with chemicals and filter problems what will you do?

I provided a link to the installation instructions from Dampp Chaser. Disklaviers are pretty rare and so they don’t write up specific instructions for those pianos. The backside system is also rare and has to be special ordered.

What chemicals? It’s water in two buckets and some
heating rods.

The pads probably have to be changed once a year.

My technician’s price is very fair and I don’t think he is getting rich installing Dampp Chasers.

As shown in my pictures, there is already a hole through the soundboard out there by the Yamaha factory. We hope to be able to get all the Dampp Chaser wires through it. If not, then a hole out the bottom of the piano, which is not that risky just difficult to drill.

I don’t think I will be able to keep as stable a humidity level in 1000 square feet as I can maintain in the case of an upright. Cigars are kept in humidors, not in humidified rooms, unless you’re a commercial seller of cigars. I’m not living in a museum and will not be able to keep the humidity as constant as the Dampp Chaser system.

As for Bosendorfer, of course, they’re arrogant and think that their pianos do not need any help but I bet you could find pianos that have been ruined by being in poor environments. Manufacturers often do not care about the maintenance of their pianos. They just want to sell and move on to the next sale.

Last edited by LarryK; 10/23/20 03:06 AM.
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Here are the instructions for installing the Dampp Chaser on a grand:

https://www.pianoteksupply.com/assets/pdf/instructions/Dampp-Chaser%20Grand%20Instructions.pdf

I’m not seeing where it says a hole must be drilled in the soundboard.

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Originally Posted by LarryK
What chemicals? It’s water in two buckets and some heating rods.
The chemical Damp Chaser recommends adding is a biocide of some kind, most humidifier manufacturers also recommend it to inhibit growth of bacteria, mold and algae. I researched this when I got a humidifier for my piano room and decided there were enough credible concerns about biocides causing lung disease that I decided to just monitor the tank and clean it with vinegar when I saw any signs of growth. In the case of this small system, I'm not sure how much of the chemical actually ends up airborne, and how much is contained in the internal space of the piano. The fact that Damp Chaser requires not using other products because they might contain acids that can damage the piano strings and other metallic components makes me guess most of the chemical deposits itself in/on the piano so it's not much of a health risk.


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Originally Posted by MarkL
Originally Posted by LarryK
What chemicals? It’s water in two buckets and some heating rods.
The chemical Damp Chaser recommends adding is a biocide of some kind, most humidifier manufacturers also recommend it to inhibit growth of bacteria, mold and algae. I researched this when I got a humidifier for my piano room and decided there were enough credible concerns about biocides causing lung disease that I decided to just monitor the tank and clean it with vinegar when I saw any signs of growth. In the case of this small system, I'm not sure how much of the chemical actually ends up airborne, and how much is contained in the internal space of the piano. The fact that Damp Chaser requires not using other products because they might contain acids that can damage the piano strings and other metallic components makes me guess most of the chemical deposits itself in/on the piano so it's not much of a health risk.

Oh, yes, that’s the other problem with humidifiers, the growth of mold and the difficult of cleaning them. My expensive Venta became impossible to clean, it had so many nooks and crannies, that I just threw it away after a few years.

I will look up the biocide. It’s hard for me to believe it will produce hazardous conditions in the large volume of my house.

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Originally Posted by LarryK
Here are the instructions for installing the Dampp Chaser on a grand:

https://www.pianoteksupply.com/assets/pdf/instructions/Dampp-Chaser%20Grand%20Instructions.pdf

I’m not seeing where it says a hole must be drilled in the soundboard.

In a grand everything is mounted to beams and rim in the open space under the soundboard. No need to drill anything; all you need is screw into beams and rim. And some do not even screw anything, and use wire straps instead.

Here are instructions for upright: https://www.pianoteksupply.com/assets/pdf/instructions/Dampp-Chaser%20Vertical%20Instructions.pdf

And here for backside installation where they tell you have to drill soundboard or bottmo board: https://www.pianoteksupply.com/asse...20Backside%20Vertical%20Instructions.pdf

Last edited by VladK; 10/23/20 12:28 PM.

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Originally Posted by LarryK
... A Dampp Chaser system is relatively cheap, coming in at around $300 or so ...

$300 does not even cover the technician's cost of a backside vertical system. Or have I misread everything?


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Originally Posted by Eric Gloo
Originally Posted by LarryK
... A Dampp Chaser system is relatively cheap, coming in at around $300 or so ...

$300 does not even cover the technician's cost of a backside vertical system. Or have I misread everything?

Backside kit is much more expensive because it includes 4 short dehumidifier bars instead of usual 1 long one (2 for grand), and 2 small humidifiers and humidifier heater bars instead of usual large 1.

Last edited by VladK; 10/24/20 01:05 PM.

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Originally Posted by VladK
Originally Posted by Eric Gloo
Originally Posted by LarryK
... A Dampp Chaser system is relatively cheap, coming in at around $300 or so ...

$300 does not even cover the technician's cost of a backside vertical system. Or have I misread everything?

Backside kit is much more expensive because it includes 4 short dehumidifier bars instead of usual 1 long one (2 for grand), and 2 small humidifiers and humidifier heater bars instead of usual large 1.

Much more expensive? Anyway, the cost was around $350, not counting the cost of installation. Given the cost of the piano, this cost is noise.

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I typically charge about $850 to install one of these things (BSV) It is a pain in the neck (literally) to install. Yes, it does work better (quite a bit better) than the stock unit, but wow...what a pain.

And yours is even more complicated than the usual pain.

Peter Grey Piano Doctor


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I am curious, are there makes that consider installation of Life Saver a breach of warranty terms?


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Originally Posted by P W Grey
I typically charge about $850 to install one of these things (BSV) It is a pain in the neck (literally) to install. Yes, it does work better (quite a bit better) than the stock unit, but wow...what a pain.

And yours is even more complicated than the usual pain.

Peter Grey Piano Doctor

Peter,

Could you be more specific about why it is such a pain? I think we have a plan for installation but I am wondering if we’re missing something.

Thanks,

Larry

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1) You must move the piano out from the wall. (Okay, if it rolls easily that's no problem, but if it's on carpet and casters are inoperative...😠)

2) You must find a suitable place to install the humidistat (inside the piano) and figure out how you're going to get the wires back to where the operational stuff is (this is easier said than done)

3) You need to set up the dual humidifier tanks (connected by a tube)

4) Weird routing of fill tube

5) You must install the back side cover in such a way that you can get to and use the fill tube. (This part takes quite a bit of time)

6) Move the piano back (could be easy...could be a pain)

True, after you've done about 5-6 of these it's probably a little easier, but when you're used to the front side model all the time, it's a time consumer. Gotta get paid for this.

Then, when it's time to change the wicks in the humidifier...must pull the piano out (could be easy, could be hard), partially remove the cover, replace the wicks, replace the cover and hope everything remains intact...

The whole thing is a mixed blessing. And I probably missed something...but some may say I'm just being an EEYORE.

But it works well once it's in.

Peter Grey Piano Doctor

Last edited by P W Grey; 10/24/20 11:55 PM.

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Thanks Peter.

It’s on wheels, on a wood floor. I purposely did not put it on casters or a rug because I knew that maintenance would involve rolling it away from the wall.

We hope to mount the humidistat in the front compartment with all wires going through the hole that Yamaha has drilled but we will see.

I think the back cover is attached with Velcro. Is it possible to have the fill tube come out one of the sides and not at the top?

I guess the real question is, have you seen better tuning stability in pianos with the Dampp Chaser the pianos without? I mean, I could eBay the whole system and leave the piano alone but I have the feeling that the piano will hold its tuning better with the system.

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