Taking care of your loved ones’ headstones is a nice way to honor their memory, and preserve their monuments. If you’re new to headstone maintenance in Walterboro, SC, this guide will help you get started. Try to clean the headstones once or twice per year, so dirt and grime don’t have a chance to build up.
Cleaning granite headstones is especially easy because granite is such a tough material. Unlike marble, you don’t need to worry that you’ll damage the stone during the cleaning process.
At a minimum, you will need a bucket, several liters of clean water, a gentle dish soap like Ivory, some rags and cotton swabs. If the stone has mold, mildew or rust stains, you’ll also need hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and a soft-bristled brush. Rust stains also benefit from iron removal products.
For general cleaning, remove all the excess dirt and debris from the stone first. Combine the dish soap with some of the clean water and mix thoroughly. Soak a rag in the mixture, wring it out and wipe down the headstone until all the dirt is gone. Use cotton swabs to get rid of dirt in the etchings or engravings. Finally, rinse with clean water and dry with a clean cloth.
If the stone has mold or mildew stains, mix a poultice with a cup of baking soda, five tablespoons of dish soap and enough hydrogen peroxide to make a thick paste. Apply this to the headstone and let it sit for several hours, then wash away and dry. You may need the brush to get the stains out.
If the stone has rust stains, follow the directions on an iron removal product, then wash away and dry.
Marble headstones can be cleaned in a similar fashion—but make sure you check the stone for wear and tear first. Cracks, chips and breakage can get worse if you clean a damaged stone. Be cautious when trying to remove stains, since marble is a soft and porous material—it can be damaged easily.
To clean a bronze headstone, you’ll need a bucket, water, gentle dish soap, rags and cotton swabs. You can also buy a bronze paste wax from your local home improvement store. Follow the same steps as you would to clean a granite headstone. (You probably won’t need to remove any stains, but you may need to remove mold and mildew with a soft-bristled brush.) Once the headstone is clean and dry, follow up with the paste wax. Follow the manufacturer’s directions to apply, buff and wipe away the wax. You should be left with a brilliant, shiny and protected surface.
Cleaning your loved ones’ granite headstones in Walterboro, SC is a great way to preserve their memory and keep their monuments in beautiful shape—and it’s easy, too.
If you’re interested in purchasing a custom monument, Steedley Monument Works is here to help. We can help you design a lasting tribute to your loved one’s memory. Reach out today to arrange a consultation.