Picking out a casket for yourself or a loved one can be a daunting task. Before you pick out a casket, you should know what your options are. The prices listed below are guidelines. Casket prices vary greatly depending on the quality of the materials used.
Metal Caskets are machine built and are usually offered in the following materials with average/estimated prices:
$ - Standard20 Gauge Non-Sealer Carbon Steel*: $855 - $1,590
$ - Standard20 Gauge Sealer Carbon Steel*: $1,819 - $2,665
$$ - Standard 18 Gauge Sealer Carbon Steel*: $2,185 - $4,370
$$$ -Standard 16 Gauge Sealer Carbon Steel*: $4,450 - $4,960
$$$ - Stainless Steel: $4,450 - $5,690
$$$$ - Copper: $6,330 - $7,785+
$$$$$ - Bronze: $6,940 - $14,850+
*Steel/Carbon Steel thickness is expressed in gauges. 16 gauge is thicker than 20 gauge steel. A 16 gauge casket is composed of one sheet of 16 Gauge Steel. The gauge number refers to the number of sheets of that particular metal it takes to make one inch. Only one sheet of this material is used, the casket shell is not one inch thick.
Stainless Steel comes in two varieties as well. Standard stainless (Resists Corrosion / Rust) & premium stainless (will not rust).
**Copper and Bronze are often stated by weight. For example, a 32-oz. copper casket means that the copper used weighed 32-oz.per square foot.
Buyers should pay attention to the details to know whether the casket is solid copper, bronze, etc. or just plated. This will cause a large difference in price between options.
Wood caskets often include a hand-crafted aspect and vary greatly in selection. Pricing with each category can also vary due to where the wood originated and quality of the wood that is selected. Range from $2,000 - $20,000
$ - Common Hardwoods* such as Poplar, Cottonwood, & Pine: $900 - $2,700
$$ - Standard Hardwoods such as Oak, Maple, & Cherry: $2,200 - $4,500
$$$ - Premium Hardwoods such as Walnut and Mahogany: $5,000 - $10,000
*Often times these woods can be finished to appear like Standard or Premium Hardwoods. Buyers should pay attention to whether the casket is finished like a particular wood or is constructed of a particular wood, as this will influence the cost of the casket.
A burial vault or liner is usually made of concrete but can also be made of steel or plastic. It is placed in the grave prior to lowering the casket for in-ground burial. It is a container that surrounds the casket, providing additional infrastructure between the casket and the earth and ground maintenance machinery. Its primary purpose is to prevent the ground from caving or reduce soil settlement allowing for easier ground maintenance.
A vault is a more comprehensive, expensive, and sometime decorative container that provides water proof qualities. A liner is a simpler container that will satisfy the cemetery requirement at a lower cost. It may cover the top and sides only or have a simple lid placed on top.This option will not keep elements surrounding the vault out.
Contrary to popular belief, a burial vault or liner is not required by law. It is the cemetery that requires the use of a burial vault or container to prevent the ground from sinking. If required by the cemetery, inquire on your options since there is a significant difference in price between a vault (average $1,850 - $11,000) and a liner (average $1,020 - $1,225), and a liner will almost always satisfy the cemetery's requirement.
Cremation Caskets are coffins intended to be displayed at a funeral, but, in many cases, they are ultimately used in the cremation.
Cremation caskets are common when a person is to be cremated but the family wants to conduct a traditional funeral service before the cremation.
The main difference between cremation caskets and standard caskets for burial is that they are often made up of lighter weight materials. They often appear as luxurious as the heavier version used for burial.