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Helpful Resources | Santa Barbara Monumental Co.

Cleaning Memorials in the Cemetery

The granite memorial you have purchased is a combination of the finest natural materials and modern craftsmanship. However, like any material exposed to the elements some maintenance is recommended. Memorials are exposed to airborne pollution, chemical residues from fertilizer and weed killers, and especially mineral deposits from water.

Never use waxes or polishes on the granite. Any window-cleaning agent, such as Windex, will bring up the natural luster by cleaning the surface of the stone.

Once or twice a year, perhaps on an anniversary, birthday or Memorial Day, use a solution made from three or four tablespoons of granular electric dishwasher detergent, such as Cascade, Electrosal or Sunlight, and one quart of water to scrub the memorial. A fiber-bristled brush (do not use plastic or metal bristle brushes) should be used and when the washing is completed, the memorial should be rinsed thoroughly. Take care not to get the solution in your eyes by wearing appropriate eye protection. It is best if this cleaning is done when the memorial is cool – early morning or late afternoon is best.

For heavy mineral deposits, the memorial can be cleaned with pumice stone. Pumice is a soft volcanic rock that can be used to clean polished granite. DO NOT USE ON MARBLE, BRONZE OR NON-POLISHED SURFACES!

1.Wipe off memorial to remove any loose debris. This step is very important.
2.Pumice should be used wet. Gently rub the pumice stone on the polished surfaces in a light, circular motion. Do not try to clean in areas where the polish has been removed. The pumice stone will slowly wear away while removing the surface buildup.
3.Wipe or wash off the residue.
Things to know about your cemetery

Cemeteries have different rules and regulations regarding memorials. To make a wise purchase, you need to be aware of these regulations and how they affect your memorial purchase. Our experienced staff can help you make sure that all cemetery regulations are met so your choice of a memorial can be installed without delay.
Useful Links

Monument Builders of North America
Visit www.monumentbuilders.org  (opens a new window)
Formed in 1906 to educate memorialists and give them a forum to exchange ideas and advancements of the industry.

California Monument Association
Visit www.californiamonument.org (opens a new window)
Since 1939, CMA has promoted quality memorialization and sought to protect the public’s right to purchase memorials from the source of their choice.

American Institute of Commemorative Art
Visit www.monuments-aica.com (opens a new window)
Exists to promote excellence in commemorative art and to enhance design and professional knowledge through the exchange of ideas within an atmosphere of trust.

California Department of Consumer Affairs, Cemetery and Funeral Bureau
Visit www.cfb.ca.gov (opens a new window)
Licenses and regulates California funeral directors, cemeteries and crematories. Publishes “Consumer Guide to Funeral and Cemetery Purchases.”

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