Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone

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thewoodlands

Minister of Fire
Hearth Supporter
Aug 25, 2009
16,942
In The Woods
This is what I've been doing but cleaning it after I cut back the grass is just getting the dirt off it and then put some water on it and wipe it off with a small soft towel on the brass markers. I find the edge of the cement by putting my fingers under the dirt and then make a line with my garden trowel and then cut the grass back, that way I don't damage or scratch the marker.

Cleaning Government-Furnished Headstones and Markers - National Cemetery Administration


I thought that earlier on I made a thread on this but couldn't find it. When I take care of some flowers at the cemetery, I started cutting back the grass that had covered the markers.

Today after taking care of some flowers, I did another five for a total of 12 this summer.
 
Thank you for taking the time to care for those who passed.
 
Thank you for taking the time to care for those who passed.
Thanks @EatenByLimestone , it all started when I watched the video on how to clean them. They took time in their life to serve, I figure that I can spend an extra hour or so when I'm at the cemetery and cut back the grass and clean them off some.
 
The last two weeks have been busy around here so I haven't cleaned up any markers since my last post. I'm still at 12 cleaned up ( grass cut back) but I still plan on getting a total of 20 done before the end of October.

Next year I plan on getting there early in the year and hopefully get 40 done by this time next year.
 
Today I removed flowers from some graves, I finally did another 4 Veteran Bronze Markers for a total of 16 this year. My next trip in, I plan on doing another 4 to 6 for a total of 20 or 22 this year.

3 out of the 4 today, the grass had grown over so much of it, you could hardly make out the names.
 
Before and after of a local pioneer. Between the oblivious groundskeepers and vandals, it is a never ending job.

Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone


We clean marble and granite with a commercial concoction by the name of "D2". Every so often we go back and apply another treatment.
 
Before and after of a local pioneer. Between the oblivious groundskeepers and vandals, it is a never ending job.

View attachment 316709View attachment 316710View attachment 316711View attachment 316712

We clean marble and granite with a commercial concoction by the name of "D2". Every so often we go back and apply another treatment.
Very nice, I'll be doing some family headstones next spring with D2. I had planned on doing it in the spring but it didn't happen.

What do you use for brushes and what type of bristles?
 
Very nice, I'll be doing some family headstones next spring with D2. I had planned on doing it in the spring but it didn't happen.

What do you use for brushes and what type of bristles?
Soap and water with a stiff bristle scrub brush (non-metal) We found that a corn whisk broom worn down to the stitching works well for the nooks and crannies, They will quickly wear sown and conform to the engraving. Lichens can be tough, but don't be tempted to use a wire brush that will leave metal residue that penetrates the porous rock.

The first photo above (before replacing the obelisk) is after a being scrubbed and treated every other week for about 4 months. Another photo taken just about 40 years ago is what we used to replicate the obelisk.

Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone


By the way - vandals pried that geodesic marker loose a few weeks ago, but luckily we found it cast aside. I'll be returning with a bag of concrete to secure Uncle LW's legacy with a length of galvanized chain embedded within.
 
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I cut back the grass on another six markers today for a total of 22. I usually cut it back more and then pour water on the cement and then clean it up but everything is pretty wet so I'll wait until next year and do it. Most of the markers I do look like the first picture or worse.

I'm pretty sure in a previous post I said, whatever number I did this year would be doubled next year, 44 is my goal.

Just some pictures with the names covered, my last marker I did today was a man from my old hometown, he won the Silver Star Medal, Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.

He was one of the nicest guy you could ever meet (wife too) they were big supporters of any of our sports programs, youth or high school.

Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
 
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Cleaning bronze grave markers can be a meaningful way to honor our veterans. Try a mix of mild dish soap and water with a soft brush or cloth for gentle cleaning. If there are tougher stains, consider using a specialized bronze cleaner.
 
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Cleaning bronze grave markers can be a meaningful way to honor our veterans. Try a mix of mild dish soap and water with a soft brush or cloth for gentle cleaning. If there are tougher stains, consider using a specialized bronze cleaner.
I was going to do a family members this year but decided on waiting until spring of 2024. I have some Dawn dish soap with plans to pick up a small bottle of Ivory too. I'll get a new toothbrush for cleaning the tougher spots.
 
Cleaning bronze grave markers can be a meaningful way to honor our veterans. Try a mix of mild dish soap and water with a soft brush or cloth for gentle cleaning. If there are tougher stains, consider using a specialized bronze cleaner.
Also, when considering respectful ways to care for memorials, sites like greenfarewells.com offer insights into eco-friendly options, aligning with honoring our heroes and the environment. It's a beautiful way to maintain these special markers with care and respect.
 
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I'll start cleaning more this year, I think last year I did 22 so this year I would like that number doubled if not more, hopefully mother nature gives us some nice weather.

They allow you back in the cemetery at the start of May but it's still pretty wet.
 
I had planned on cleaning about four markers today but before I would start on them I cleaned two family headstones, one was pretty dirty so that took longer then I thought it would, but they're done.
 
I did two bronze markers today but the ground was still pretty wet which made everything muddy so I stopped, hopefully we get a dry stretch.
 
The rain will stop pretty soon. Mud season is almost over.
 
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The rain will stop pretty soon. Mud season is almost over.
We received more rain last night but the sun today took care of that real quick. The start of next week will be hot but by the end of the week we'll cool off.

This spring I cleaned two headstones, since it was my first time doing it, I wasn't sure how they would come out but both cleaned up real nice.

There's a third headstone that I'll clean this week but it's older so I'll use this Wet and Forget. The first two I used distilled water, two spray bottles, one had just distilled water and the other had distilled water with a drop of Dawn or you can use Ivory. Some soft brushes with a tooth brush and they cleaned up nice.

Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
 
The day turned out nice! Hopefully tomorrow is similar.
 
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For old stone grave markers, it's best to use cleaning agents (if any) with pH=7 .
This has pH=8, so it's somewhat basic. I'm not sure how "bad" that is.


It is nice of you to maintain cemeteries.
It's not the worst I've seen, you can still read what's on the headstone, the headstone has been there since 1932. the front has some black on the top part in the front, I'll use this and see how it works but thanks for the info, I'll save that link.
 
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For old stone grave markers, it's best to use cleaning agents (if any) with pH=7 .
This has pH=8, so it's somewhat basic. I'm not sure how "bad" that is.


It is nice of you to maintain cemeteries.
I did use the Wet & Forget Outdoor today on an older family headstone, it does work but like they say, it won't remove everything the first time. I sprayed the front where the names and the years are and let it be for about 10 minutes. I poured water over the front of the headstone, the black and the green ran down the front of it.

I did use a toothbrush on it which really cleaned up the names and the years and then sprayed it again. I still have the back that needs cleaning so when I do that, I'll get a before & after picture.

Thanks, after my father passed, I'm the only one in this area, the rest of my family live 3 hours away but I enjoy doing it. When I was searching ways you could clean a veterans memorial marker, a bunch of stuff came up about cleaning headstones, that's when I decided I would do it, this is my first year doing it.

When you're cleaning them or just at the cemetery, you forget about all the stuff that's going on and you remember different things depending on which family headstone you're at, brings back some good times.
 
My last cleaning on the headstone I've been working on was May 23, I made another trip in today so I could do more cleaning. I started of with distilled water with a drop of dawn in it, I sprayed the headstone and then used a soft brush, the worst of the moss & lichen are off of it in my opinion. After rinsing it off, I let it dry some which didn't take long with the nice breeze we had.

I took off to another cemetery and took care of flowers on another four headstones, three were family and the last was a good neighbor when I lived in my old hometown. I headed back to the first cemetery so I could give it a quick cleaning before I headed home, a bird had left its mark so I grabbed more distilled water with dawn and then cleaned that off. I let it dry off some before I sprayed it with Wet & Forget Ready-To-Use, it hasn't removed all the black stains yet but everything is a lighter gray with a lot of the headstone close to its original color.

If the headstone still has some gray marks on it at the end of the summer, I'll have some D2 on hand so I can clean the rest of it.

It looks like we're in for some warmer weather, that should dry the ground out enough I can start cleaning up or cutting back the grass on some Bronze Veterans Memorial Markers.
 
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This is the headstone that needed the Wet & Forget product I posted above. I'm pretty sure May 23 was the first day I worked on it, May 29 was the second time and the last day I worked on it until fall comes around when I'll see how it looks.

I erased the names off it but the staining still comes through in most of the areas, the picture on the left was what I started with and the picture on the right is what it looked like today when a I stopped up after a funeral mass, it looks like mother nature is helping out.

The first thing I used on it was distilled water with a drop of dawn dish soap in a small bottle sprayer with some small soft brushes, after cleaning some stuff off I sprayed the Wet & Forget in post # 17 on it.

Cleaning Bronze Veteran Ground Level Flat Grave Marker Headstone
 
That looks a lot better! I’m sure the family of the deceased would appreciate it!
 
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