There are several factors to take into account when determining the kind of casket that will be most suitable for you or a loved one. Durability and aesthetic value are both crucial considerations, but cost is also a big factor in choosing a casket.
The selection process will go more smoothly if you know the various types of casket materials and the one you want. This article explains everything you should know about the types of casket available in the market.
Types of Caskets
1. Standard steel metal caskets
It might come as a surprise to you when you start looking for a casket that many of them are made of metal. Metal caskets come in many different colors and have a wide range of features and personalization options.
They are rated according to how much thick material was used in their construction and are advertised as being “durable.” A 20-gauge metal casket is less resilient than a 17-gauge metal casket. The 17-gauge option would also cost more than the thinner one.
Bronze, copper, or steel are the most common materials used to make metal coffins. They are durable and can resist rust, which is why they are traditional coffin choices. Another common material is steel, which is rust-resistant but not rust-proof.
Most metal caskets also include a rubber gasket that is wrapped around the lid and the bottom of the container. This “rubber gasket” feature, which keeps the outside elements from entering the casket, is frequently marketed as a protective feature to keep the body of the deceased safe. However, it does not stop decomposition and is not required by law.
Although metal casket does provide better protection from water, soil weight, and shifting earth, it is not an environmentally friendly option.
Copper or bronze caskets
Since the methods for assessing quality differ for bronze and copper caskets and metal caskets, they are listed in a different categories. Bronze or Copper (or gold!) coffins are rated based on the material’s weight, like 20 or 35 ounces per square foot, rather than based on its gauge.
Most families prefer bronze caskets over metal ones because they don’t rust. Even though this is the case, a copper or bronze coffin won’t last indefinitely; it will oxidize and decay eventually.
Wood caskets are the most basic style of caskets. They are very simple and eco-friendly and can be made entirely or mostly from hard or softwood. You’ll need a wooden casket if you or your loved one is being cremated.
The styles and types of wood caskets are more varied. The most popular woods used for caskets are walnut, mahogany, and cherry because they polish up beautifully. However, these materials cost more money.
Hardwood caskets price can vary widely depending on the wood used and the level of construction. Mahogany, cherry or walnut, are used to make the most expensive wood caskets. oak, birch, and maple are affordable options. Oak is renown for its highly recognizable graining pattern.
The use of a wooden casket does not require you to forgo any luxuries. They can also have a lot of extra features and fittings, like satin lining and pillows, and exteriors that are beautifully carved and come in a variety of colors. There are several elegantly crafted wood caskets in the market to choose from if you’re planning your own funeral service.
Stainless steel caskets
Stainless steel coffins are more resilient than those made of carbon steel. They are also less prone to corrosion. The stainless steel exterior can be covered with a veneer of wood to get the same wood casket appearance.
Compared to regular steel coffins, stainless steel caskets do not corrode as quickly. This means they are more expensive compared to caskets made of standard steel.
Other types of caskets
The deceased’s remains are kept in a cremation casket during the memorial or funeral services until they are inserted into the cremation chamber. Wood, natural products like particleboard, wicker, or cardboard can all be used to make cremation caskets.
Families are free to choose any type of casket for the cremation procedure as long as it is rigid, leak-proof, combustible, non-toxic, and devoid of any metal components.
Half-couch lidded casket
Today, the most popular type of casket accessible in the majority of the world is a half-couch casket. Its two-piece cover, which is its distinguishing characteristic, is what makes it unique.
This enables a family to open only half of the casket’s top during a wake or viewing, allowing mourners to glimpse the deceased’s face and upper torso. But the lids of half-couch caskets can still be opened so that the whole body of the dead person can be seen.
This is probably one of the factors contributing to the long-standing popularity of half-couch caskets. For many families, it’s crucial to have the choice of opening either just one portion of the lid or both.
The term “full-couch lid” refers to a lid that can only be opened in its entirety. If you choose a full-couch casket, the whole body of the deceased will be on display when people come to visit.
A full-couch casket is also suitable for funerals where there won’t be a viewing of the body. The decision might be made based on taste or decency if the corpse isn’t in a condition to be seen.
Even if a family intends to cremate a loved one’s remains, they might still wish to have a funeral first to let other friends and family members pay their respects, before the cremation services. They can have also preferred an open-casket funeral with viewing.
If so, they can rent a half-couch coffin to save money. They don’t need to spend extra money on a casket that will only be used at the burial because they will eventually cremate the deceased’s body.
Ecological (green) caskets
With the popularity of green funerals increasing, more people are choosing caskets made of natural, biodegradable materials. Families that wish to bury a loved one but are worried about the effects of burying a coffin in the earth would find this appealing. They’ll be able to hold the usual funeral arrangements while also reducing their environmental impact by using an eco-friendly half-couch coffin.
There are several different types of eco-friendly coffins. They could be made of cardboard, woven fibers, or raw wood. “Green” caskets don’t have any metal components or chemical paints or veneers and are made of a variety of recyclable and/or renewable materials, such as bamboo, organic cotton, cardboard, and willow. The handles or hinges on eco-friendly caskets are made from wood and other biodegradable materials.
Whether you choose metal caskets or wood caskets, you probably have the choice to customize it in some way. Most people request the coffin maker to decorated the exterior of the casket with their favorite team or figure.
You can, at the very least, decide the color of the casket’s interior to express support for a favorite team or nation.
The pinnacle of personalized caskets is the fantasy coffin. The United States does not typically use them, but if you wanted one made for your own funeral, you might start a trend. Fantasy coffins are distinctive and designed to resemble anything you want.
Do you desire a burial vault like those from ancient Egypt? Perhaps you would prefer a casket shaped like your preferred species of fish.
You can build a DIY casket using inexpensive materials. There are several DIY casket kits that include step-by-step instructions that are available for purchase in bookstores and online.
Depending on your level of skill, building your own casket can help you save money on funeral expenses. These are also wonderful ways to pay a special, personalized tribute to a deceased loved one.
How to choose the best casket
There are different considerations when choosing the ideal casket, including the following.
A few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars can be spent on a casket. Having a budget in mind before you go shopping is the best way to prevent overspending. If you are displaying caskets to you, and if you are purchasing from funeral homes, the funeral director is required to show you a price list. This will allow you focus on only the options that fall within the price range you’ve set.
Decide on the material.
Do you want a steel, biogradable or wood casket? Determining the type of casket material you want can save you time when in the market to make your purchase. Although your choices may be limited if you’re on a budget. Wood caskets are one of the best choices if you are on a budget.
Consider what your loved one would want.
If a loved one has left instructions regarding the kind of casket they would like, you can use those instructions as a guide when buying one for them. This is not always the case, though. You can limit your options for casket material, linings, and trim by considering the preferences and personality deceased person.
Frequently asked questions about caskets
What should I consider when selecting a casket?
The two main factors to take into account when selecting a casket are price and personal preference. If money is tight, you might want to look into casket types that are reasonably priced and made of cheap materials.
What’s the typical cost of a casket?
Caskets come in a variety of price points, just like any consumer good. The type of material used as well as the addition of special features affect the casket’s overall cost.
- Prices for metal caskets range from $800 for a 20 gauge steel coffin to $15,000 for a bronze coffin with 14K gold plated hardware.
- Wood caskets range in price from $600 to $10,000.
- Rentable coffins cost $500 to $1,500.
Is it true that a sealed casket will delay a body’s decomposition?
This is not entirely true. The seals mostly prevent water from entering the caskets.
What kind of casket material is the cheapest?
Cardboard is the most affordable material for a casket. Cardboard caskets are made of cheap materials, easily decompose when buried, and are extremely combustible when burned. Some wood caskets are also less costly. Standard steel, often known as carbon steel, is used to make the most economical metal caskets.
Which are the high price caskets?
Bronze and copper coffins are the priciest metal caskets. The most expensive wood caskets are made of high-end hardwoods like mahogany, cherry, and maple.