An instrumentalist truly passionate about music knows that his instrument is part of his life and taking care of it is like taking care of yourself. Choosing the accordion as a companion is a decision that entails responsibility in maintaining it to prevent it from being damaged and cannot be used. Cleaning it, storing it, and taking it away from certain situations will make the accordion stay intact longer.
One of the most striking and complex instruments of all is the accordion. Its structure is “strange”, so to speak, since it seems that it is the mixture of several objects in one. At one end, it resembles a piano, at the other end, it looks very similar to a computer keyboard due to the number of keys it has, and these two sides are joined by a kind of cardboard structure that opens and closes to produce the sounds.
All of this is completed by, most of the time, eye-catching designs in bright colors that take for granted the fact that the accordion’s goal is to grab attention and shine everywhere. Whether due to its striking and creative design, its beautiful melodies or its peculiar structure, the instrument manages to stand out at all times.
It is understandable that with so many parts involved in its manufacture and with its complicated and unique design, the accordion is an instrument that must be taken care of to avoid deterioration and that its cleaning may take a little longer than other more commercial instruments, such as guitars. or batteries.
To keep an accordion in good condition, not only is it enough to acquire a product manufactured by the best accordion brand ( in this link you will find several products to analyze ) that you can get, since, if you do not take care of the instrument, it will inevitably lose its shine and its functionality. If you want to continue playing as a professional and keep the melodies intact, then you must take into account certain aspects.
How to clean an accordion?
The first thing that should be part of your accordion maintenance routine is a good cleaning. This should be done every three to six months. For this you must have on hand: cotton, a cloth, soap and water.
Dampen the cotton and add a little soap to it to take care of the entire outside of the accordion and get rid of any dust that may accumulate there. If the cotton gets very dirty, change it before you continue cleaning; otherwise you will only spread the dirt.
Using the cloth, clean the dust from the keys and buttons, preventing it from accumulating and reaching the valves. Then, wipe the entire structure with the cloth to dry the accordion.
You should not use alcohols, solvents, or any solution other than water. If you wish, at the end of the cleaning, you can use a special wax for accordions that allows you to clean the wood and make it shine like never before.
What must be taken into account when caring for an accordion?
Cleanliness, as stated above, is paramount in accordion maintenance. This prevents dust from accumulating and the instrument from wearing out, however, if you really want the accordion to stay intact for a longer amount of time, then there are some tips to keep in mind when handling, storing and even transporting it.
When playing the instrument
Due to the complexity of the internal structure, if you do not have knowledge about all the components of the accordion, it is not recommended that you manipulate the interior of the instrument.
Before playing the accordion, sound each of the keys and buttons to prepare them for your practice session, as this will make the sounds more beautiful and fluid. Even if you don’t want to play for practice, taking out the accordion and playing the notes daily will keep its components in good condition. Failure to do so may cause the reeds to become somewhat “stiff,” which will negatively affect the sound in the long run. Also, remember to treat the bellows with care, without jerking it, to avoid detachment and irreversible damage to the instrument.
If you buy a new accordion and want to play it, you should bear in mind that it is not advisable to apply a lot of pressure the first month of use to avoid forcing the keys and wear the structure.
When you need to move it from side to side
If due to a presentation or to have it near you you must transport it, the first thing you should do, like any instrument, is to place it in a case. This will protect your accordion from bumps, drops, and will also keep it clean.
If you are traveling by plane or will be on long road trips, always carry your accordion with you, as hand luggage if you are at the airport. Leaving it in a car trunk or in an airplane hold subjects the instrument to vibrations from movement and minor shocks as a result.
By keeping it in your home
If you don’t use it very often and keep your accordion in your home, you need to protect it from three things above anything else: humidity, temperature, and dust.
For example, humidity greater than 65% causes poplar wood, like any other, to swell and the parts of the instrument begin to damage. This risk increases when you live near the sea, since the air, in addition to humidity, comes with saltpeter. This beach environment makes oxidation fast and corrosion can damage the instrument.
Exposing the accordion to extreme temperatures can also completely damage it. If the temperature is below 12 ° C, the cold can wear down the metal parts and distort the instrument’s tones. On the other hand, temperatures that exceed 25 ° C can contribute to the deterioration of the wood and the softening of the wax used for gluing and coating. Keeping the accordion in a place free of humidity and at a temperature between 15 and 25 ° C is ideal.
In addition to this, keeping the accordion dust-free will allow it to remain intact for longer. Storing it in its sleeve is the easiest thing to do, while cleaning it will actually prevent the valves from closing due to dust.
If you decide to take care of the accordion, you will surely enjoy it for years and you will not notice the passage of time. Therefore, keeping these tips in mind will prevent you from needing to purchase another instrument for quite some time.