Chesed v'Emet - Burial Vaults

Burial Vaults-Also known as “Outer Burial Containers,” are not required by State law. Rather, each cemetery makes its own rules and regulations regarding the use of burial vaults. As it happens, most cemeteries in Illinois require the use of some type of grave liner or, more commonly, a burial vault.


Most burial vaults in this part of the country are made of concrete. Simply put, a burial vault is a concrete container designed to enclose the casket before burial. A vault has a bottom, sides, and a top. The main purpose of burial vaults is to prevent the grave from collapsing or sinking as the weight of the earth on an exposed casket would, at some point, cause the casket to collapse as it deteriorates.

As with caskets, there are basically only two types of burial vaults. The first is an unfinished raw concrete container and is designed to meet the minimum cemetery requirements. The second type, known as a warrantied burial vault, in addition to meeting the cemetery requirement to keep the grave from sinking, warrantied vaults are designed to keep water and other grave elements from entering the casket area. Made of heavy-duty, reinforced concrete, these vaults have specially developed materials adhered to the insides of the concrete vault. Some vaults are lined with a man-made polymer, while some vaults are lined with stainless steel, copper, or bronze. The more elaborate the construction of the vault, the more expensive it is. Burial vaults come in varying sizes and in some of the older cemeteries, not all vaults can fit in the grave. Therefore, “special” vaults are made. These vaults have thinner side walls than standard vaults.

Also available, are what I call the “oxymoron vaults.” Jewish tradition calls for the remains to be buried in the earth. Ssome authorities claim that because concrete is made from sand, using a burial vault meets the traditional obligation of being buried in the ground. For those who wish to follow the tradition as far as possible, an “Orthodox” vault is an option. An “Orthodox” vault is a minimum concrete vault that has no bottom. It's made with sides, ends, and a top which meets the cemetery requirements to prevent the grave from sinking, but allows the casket to rest on the bottom of the grave, in direct contact with the earth. As with our caskets, Chesed v'Emet offers burial vaults in almost any price range. Because our prices are significantly lower than other funeral service providers, families can purchase a burial vault from Chesed v'Emet even if they have chosen another provider for all their other services