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Category archive for: Community Services

Preserving Gravestones And Monuments

Graveyards can help us to know more about our ancestors and heritage. It can be used to study the history of a community. They are valued by genealogists and historians. Gravestones are also called tombstones, headstones and grave markers. These stones have the name, age and year of death of the deceased. From the 19th century, people started to give importance to these grave markers. They came with engravings with small epitaphs. This tradition is very important as they can be used to derive information about the dead person and also to know their family history. They also contain sculpted designs, like Star of David, the Dove, and angels of death, willow tree, flowers and many more. Nowadays, people tend to take care of gravestones of their dead family members. Here are some tips on how to clean tombstones without damaging them.

Decide whether the stone is cleanable:

Some tombstones and monuments show some signs of deterioration like scaling, chipping or flaking. Brushing or scrubbing these stones will do more harm to them. It is good to apply only a good quality biological cleaning solution. If needed, contact restoration services for good memorials.

Know the stone type:

 Most grave markers are usually made of slate, sandstone, marble, limestone and granite. There are many other materials of different types of granite headstone designs. To clean a tombstone, it is important to know the type of the stone. Slate and sandstones can be cleaned with water, biocide solutions and non- iconic detergents. On marble and limestones made gravestones ammonia and water solutions can be applied as well as the above mentioned ingredients. Plain granite stones are cleaned with water, non-iconic detergent and biocide solutions. Granite cleaning solutions based on acid can be applied to modern polished granite to clean them.

Brushes: 

Brushes are usually used to scrub these tombstones. It is good to use a soft brush if you are a novice in case of cleaning. They will do less harm to the stones then their harder counterpart. Try to use new brushes to clean as old dirty brushes may fail to clean the stone properly. Rinse often to ensure that the stone is not flaking or scaling off.

Random orbit motion scrubbing: 

Do not scrub on a single place. This can do harm to a particular part of the stone. Clean the back of the stone first. People tend to clean the front and leave it once they are satisfied with the front part. But, it is really necessary to clean the back. So, start with it first to avoid forgetting it.

Removing biological growth:

 Biological growth not only affects the surface, but also the inner part of the stone. So, spray biological cleaning solutions on the stone.