How to Clean Brass & Granite Headstones

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Headstones are an important marker that should be cared for properly. They denote the final resting place of an individual, and the headstone should be handled with the utmost respect, respecting not only the individual buried there, but also the family of the individual. Old and fragile headstones should be cleaned by a professional, as cleaning a deteriorating headstone can sometimes cause more harm than good. Granite headstones decorated with brass elements are a more modern styles of headstones and should be able to be cleaned easily with a few simple items.

Things You'll Need

  • Soft brush or toothbrush
  • Water
  • Spray bottle
  • Brass polish
  • Soft cloth

Rub your hand over the headstone. If no grit or sandy substance comes off of the stone, it is safe to clean.

Scrub the headstone gently with a soft brush, or old toothbrush. Brush away as much loose residue as possible, including any moss or mildew that commonly grows on stones that are in shaded areas, or receive large amounts of moisture.

Fill a spray bottle with water, and spray it directly onto the headstone, saturating the stone. Continue scrubbing the headstone with the same soft brush, repeating as needed until the stone has been cleaned completely.

Scrub the brass areas with the brush as well, to loosen and remove any loose buildup. Then, spray the brass with a brass polish (found at any hardware store), and wipe clean with a soft cloth. This step may need to be repeated several times to restore the brass back to its original condition.

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