How Long Do Caskets Last?

Last Updated: October 29, 2021

Caskets made from either metal or wood will take an average of 50 or more years to decompose underground. The casket’s duration depends on the type of wood used to build it and the composition of chemicals found on the grave.

The way the grave is protected is another factor that will affect deterioration.

Getting the right casket might be a challenge, especially with the many questions about decomposing. That is why it is best to learn about caskets and what happens when you get different caskets. 

Learning about the duration of different caskets that will last underground will help you pick the right one for your loved one. Here is a look at how long do casket lasts.

Do Coffins Decompose or Rot Underground?

Different coffins are made using different materials such as wood, steel, bronze, and copper. Thus, about the coffin will decompose or rot depends on the material used in making the product. 

For instance, coffins made using wooden materials will decompose while those made of materials with metal-like properties will rot.

But metal coffins are durable compared to those made of wood. Thus, if you want a coffin that will take long before rotting, you can choose a metallic one.

Do Coffins Collapse?

Yes, caskets will collapse, but the process will take time.

The way the casket is built is to ensure that they do not collapse initially. But over time, due to factors like rotting or rusting, environmental conditions, the casket is bound to collapse due to the pressure of soil above it.

When the casket collapses, it will lead to the soil found in the surface sinking, and this process is known as serious subsidence. 

One of the factors that speed up the time the caskets take to collapse is moisture. So, if you use a grave in a place with a lot of moisture, the rotting and collapsing process will be fast.

How Long Does A Metal Casket Last?

Most of the people who sell metal caskets say that they can last up to 100 years. However, the duration that the casket lasts is in grave condition.

One of the biggest factors is the water table. It also depends if the grave has a liner to prevent water from reaching the casket. 

As much as a metal casket can last 80-100 years under favorable conditions, if the grace site has a lot of moisture getting into it, it can rot in as little as 25 years or less.

Note that the grave condition has a huge impact, which duration that the coffin will last.

If you want a casket to serve you for a long time, you should treat the grave and protect the casket from soil using cement.

Will Worms Get Into Coffins?

When a body is buried underground, the soul creatures will eventually get into the body, whether the casket used is wooden or metallic.

The soil creatures that get in the soul include ants, worms, and any bacteria present in the soil.

However, if the body has been well embalmed or the grave has been vaulted using cement, it might take a while before worms get in the body.

But the bottom line is that over time, whether a short of a long time, you will have worms getting in tong time.

Do Coffins Prevent Water From Reaching The Body?

Most coffins are not water-tight, and thus, when the grave gets filled with water, the water will get into the coffin.

As a result, the decomposition of the coffin and the rotting of the body will be faster. It does not matter if the casket is made of wood or metal.

As long as it is not watertight, water, then moisture from the grave will penetrate it.

However, if the casket used is waterproof, little to no water will reach the body. In turn, this will increase the time that the body takes to decompose. In turn, this will help in slowing down decomposition.

Will Pressure-Treated Wood Still Rot If Buried?

All wood that gets buried in the soil will eventually rot and decompose. However, the pressure-treated wood will take longer before it starts rotting than the one not treated.

Therefore, if the casket you will be using will touch the soil, it is important to ensure that you have used the highest grade when pressure treating the wood. 

If you do not get the best grade, then the treatment will not serve the intended purpose. Thus, you will have spent more money on a casket that will not give you the service you want.

What Happens To a Casket after It’s Been Underground For Years and Years?

Caskets are designed to be strong and durable to preserve the body for the longest time possible. But it doesn’t matter how well designed, made, or the materials used to make the casket. Eventually, it will collapse. 

One of the things that affect the casket is moisture. That is why if the grave does not have any protection like cement, the coffin will collapse at a higher rate than if the casket is protected.

So if you want to get a coffin that will serve you for a long time, it is important to ensure protection.

The quality of the soil is another feature that will affect the coffin. Keep in mind that if the grave has too much moisture or the soil properties are favorable, the coffin will deteriorate fast.

After many years, the structure of the casket will weaken, which will lead to it collapsing. Afterward, it will continue to rot until it completely disintegrates.

Is Buying A Casket Worth It?

Given the fact that no matter how long it will take, both the casket and the body will rot and deteriorate, you might be wondering if investing in a casket is worth it. 

Well, the last thing you want when burying your loved ones is to know that they have started to rot and that the worms are eating their body.

So, out of respect, a casket is used to ensure you have protected your loved one for as long as possible.

That is why you should strive to invest in the best casket you can afford.