Understanding The Funeral Prearrangement Process

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Choosing The Perfect Casket Material

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One of the materials that is most often associated with a casket is wood. However, there are many other materials that caskets might be made out of, such as metal, fiberglass or biodegradable materials. The materials that you choose for a casket will affect the appearance of the casket and will also affect the impact that the casket has on the environment. 


Wooden caskets are often used because they have a comfortable and luxurious look that is reminiscent of hardwood furniture. Wood is also a preferable material if the casket is to be cremated because wood is highly combustible .Common woods used to make caskets include:

  • Ash
  • Maplewood
  • Cottonwood

The type of wood used will affect the price of the coffin.


Common materials that metal caskets are made from include:

  • Bronze
  • Steel
  • Copper

Since these metals vary in terms of their costs, the price plays just as much of a role in choosing the casket as does how the metal looks. The metal coffins can range from $1,000 to $10,000. 

Both Wood And Metal

Some caskets are made using wood and metal. For instance, most of the casket may be made out of wood, but handles and hinges may be made out of metal. This can create an interesting contrast and the metal handles will look sturdy when the casket is being carried.


Both wood and metal can be heavy to carry. If the weight of the casket is a concern, a fiberglass casket may be preferable. Fiberglass can be made to look like wood, metal or marble. Thee caskets are most often used for infant burials. While being light, they are very durable.

Biodegradable Materials

Biodegradable materials are designed to decompose more easily so that the casket is not as hard in the environment. The eco-friendly coffin is usually less expensive than other types. It may be an untreated wood casket, which causes the wood to decay more quickly. It may be a wicker basket, burial shroud or a cardboard casket. If you would still like the body to be placed in a nice casket for a viewing, a casket can be rented and the body can be moved to a more eco-friendly option after the wake.

Regardless of the material that the casket is made from, it can be customized. It may be painted a favorite color of the loved one and may also be adorned with designs. Contact a funeral home, like Foran Funeral Home, for more help.