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4 Key Questions to Ask Before You Purchase a Columbarium 

Whether you're looking to purchase the first columbarium for the local cemetery, or the 10th, it's important to ask a few very important questions.

1. Who made the columbarium and where did it come from? 

Don't assume that because you’re buying a columbarium from a Canadian supplier that the product is made in Canada. In fact, there are arguably only two Canadian columbarium manufacturers that make an all-Canadian, all-granite columbarium. Many are purchased overseas and/or assembled on site. Many of these “assembly required” units have aluminum cores.   

2. Is the manufacturer’s name on the columbarium?

If it is truly a “forever” product with the materials and quality to facilitate this promise, the manufacturer will be proud to include their name and mark on the columbarium. If you do not find any identifying labels or marks, it would be difficult to contact the manufacturer for service. Therefore, look for a manufacturer who is proud to display their name on their finished granite columbarium.

3. Does the columbarium have a warranty?

Many suppliers offer a limited warranty. If the components are made outside of Canada, ask the supplier to specify the warranty that applies to the imported core (ex. aluminum framing). Often you will discover there is no warranty on these imported, non-granite components. 

4. What is the columbarium made of?

Almost all columbariums are clad in granite but many are not solid granite. They have inferior cores made of wood, fiberglass, concrete or aluminum which are proven to fail and break down over the years when subject to the harsh conditions of our Canadian seasons.

Unfortunately, there are no established guidelines for the construction of columbariums, so quality can vary widely depending on the manufacturer. Many early columbariums were constructed with plywood or fiberglass interiors with a granite exterior. Today more common cores are made of concrete or aluminum. If you understand the common uses for many of these materials you’ll quickly realize none of them are meant to last forever and have been shown to fail over time.

A columbarium should be a positive addition to your cemetery and your community.

  • It should never have to be replaced.
  • It should be a sign of respect for loved ones interred in the cemetery.
  • It should help pay for the perpetual care funds to maintain the cemetery.
  • It should never be a burden.

So, to conclude, our recommendation is to choose a columbarium made of 100% granite because granite is known to last for over three billion years and will outlast anything in and around your cemetery. Plus it's economically comparable to any inferior product.

For more information or to find out more about our Columbarium Replacement Program, give us a call at 807-227-2650 or email us through the contact page. You can also view our columbarium styles.


Columbariums category Mausoleums category Monuments category Landscaping category