Losing a loved one can be hard. What’s even harder is gathering the courage to hold a funeral service and then cremating the body. If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us one thing.

It is that keeping funerals simple can reduce both mental and financial stress on the family of the victim.

Direct or simple cremations have become increasingly popular due to the cost savings and efficiency associated with them.

How Does Direct Cremation Work?

Cremation can typically cost you from $572 to $1200. If you add funeral costs to the mix, the number can go higher. It can be exceptionally high in case there is an open casket involved.

Here are the steps involved in a direct cremation:


Different areas and facilities have their own process and codes for this. But the basic requirement is having a family member of the deceased identify the body.

When the confirmation happens, a metal tag is placed on the body. This tag remains with the body throughout the process.


The crematory facility must have official permission to start the process. Mots facilities will require written authorization to do this.

Each facility has its own set of processes that determine who will make the final call on these decisions.

Things such as the container that will be used and who will pick the remains are finalized in this stage.


During a direct cremation process, the facility will typically take care of cleaning and dressing the body.

Embalming is typically not involved in direct cremation. It is usually the request of a family that is holding a traditional service or an open casket display.

Things such as jewerly items and removing any medical equipment like prosthetics and pacemakers are also removed.

The final step is to place the body on a strong yet combustible surface for the burning process.


It’s time to now move the body into the cremation chamber. A cremation chamber is a specially designed furnace that is also called a retort.

These chambers are exposed to very high temperatures, approximately 1,800 Fahrenheit. This only leaves ashes behind. Once the burning ends, a period of cooling down is required in order to handle the remains.


The last step is to look for any metal remains after the burning. These could be any pins, staples or even joints that the deceased had placed in surgically.

This metal is removed either by hand or through a strong magnet. Later on, its sent for recycling.

The last step is often using a processor to ground the remains and convert them in the final ashes.


Lastly, the ashes are transferred to an object like an urn and handed over to the family of the deceased.

How Long Can the Process Take?

Direct cremation takes less time than holding a proper funeral service before it. Depending on various factors such as the cremation chamber, the size and weight of the body, the vessel etc, it takes approximately 2-3 hours for flame-based processes.

When using the liquid-based process, it can take up to 16 hours.

Choose a trustworthy direct cremation facility to handle the remains of your loved one.