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How to Protect Monuments

2013-08-24   Views:3

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Erecting stone monuments is one way in which the American people have chosen to honour important men, women or events that have occurred in our country's history. Whether it is something as famous as the Georgia Guidestones or as common as a headston

How to Protect Monuments

Erecting stone monuments is one way in which the American people have chosen to honour important men, women or events that have occurred in our country's history. Whether it is something as famous as the Georgia Guidestones or as common as a headstone, the monuments that Americans erect having meaning and therefore deserve to be preserved. Protecting monuments involves planning and continual manual maintenance from the damage done by nature's elements.

Skill level:Moderate

Things you need

Chicken WireSpray BottleDistilled WaterScrub BrushToothbrushNeutral pH DetergentStone Consolidating Agent

Instructions

1 Identify problem areas on the monument including rodent nests, insect nests, bird droppings, weather damage or physical deterioration. If parts of the stone monument deteriorate upon touching, do not attempt to restore it yourself. Leave the restoration to professionals.

2 Scrub dirt, bird droppings and dust from the surface of the monument using a brush with bristles appropriate for the type of stone it is. Metal monuments or those made of hard stones like granite can be cleaned with tough bristles. Soft stones like limestone can degrade from the motion of hard bristles over the surface. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush on these monuments.

3 Use distilled water with low water pressure from a squirt bottle when attempting to clean the monuments. Rain water and tap waters all have certain levels of ions which can deteriorate the surface. Never use a bucket of water in which to dip your brush as this will make the water supply dirty. Use a fresh spray of water each time. Use cleaners with a pH of 7 (neutral) to scrub away dirt.

4 Apply a thin layer of consolidating agent to the surface of the stone. These chemicals will help bond the individual stone grains together to prevent deterioration. A common consolidating agent is known as Conservair. Products like it can be purchased online or from cemetery owners and maintenance companies.

5 Secure chicken wire around crevices or perch areas on the monument where animals like to rest or nest. This will prevent them from making a home in the monument, and discourage birds from relieving themselves on it. This reduces the amount of clean-up work that needs to be done regularly as well as protects the monument from acidic excrement which can cause long-term damage.

6 Seal off an area around the monument where people are not allowed to walk or sit. This will prevent the surrounding ground from becoming pressed and uneven, which would allow the monument to possibly tilt. Keep food off the grounds surrounding the monument; it could attract wildlife to nest in the monument.

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