Our team works with you to make sure the products you receive are top quality and get the job done right.

Our Cremation Retorts Can Be Fully Customized To Fit Your Businesses Needs

Don’t quite see what you need in our standard units?


Contact us today to discuss your needs and how we can help.


From colors & finishes, to the size and capacity of your retort, our team of engineers led by Dr. Steve Looker a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering can design just about anything you would need to personalize & customize your crematory retort & ancillary products.


When others say no, we wonder how then make it work.

Customizations Available

Paint Color

Aluminum Skins

Aluminum Stacks

Stainless Steel Skins

Stainless Steel Stacks

Add Your Company Logo

Propane or Natural Gas Burners

Rear Door and Side Door Clean Outs

Custom Dimensions (Interior and Exterior)

Partial or Full Walls in Multichambered Pet Retorts

Don’t see what you need? Give us a call 1-800-622-5411 & find out what we can do to make it work.

Frequently Asked Questions


Do all models have the same burner placement?
  • All of our models have top-fired burners. We do have multi-chambered & multi-burner pet units as well.
When emission standards are tightened, how hard would it be to make the necessary changes?
  • If the emission standards are made more stringent, it is possible that our equipment may already meet them. When Florida changed its regulations in 1992 to more stringent regulations, our equipment did not need to be retrofitted like the other manufacturers as it already met the new rules.
What is the difference between burner placement pros and cons?
  • Most modern retorts have overhead burners. This feature prevents fluids and debris from entering the burner port, while eliminating the need for a steel plate being placed over the burner during the retrieval of the remains. The only disadvantage of the overhead system is flame erosion of the hearth due to flame impingement. To help combat this problem, we fire our cremation burner at a 15-degree angle so the flame does not make direct contact with the hearth.
Is there a fluid gathering device that would be needed in an obese cremation?
  • No, our company was the first to bring the “Hot Hearth” System to the cremation industry. This system of using the waste after burning heat to raise the temperature of the hearth to a temperature in excess of 1,000 degrees evaporates the fluids on contact. A slight dishing of the hearth also prevents leakage during such times when the hearth is at lower temperatures.
What emission guidelines does a retort fall under?
  • The emission guidelines for human cremation equipment are first set at the Federal Level by the EPA. However, the actual compliance and permitting is done by the state, county, or city, depending which has the more stringent rules.
What is the stack constructed of, and what is the chance of the stack catching on fire?
  • Our stacks are constructed from steel plate and are fully lined with three inches of insulating, cast able material, capable of withstanding temperatures in excess of 2,500 degrees. Stacks on cremation equipment do not catch on fire like fireplace chimneys, as no creosote is present in the cremation process after the secondary burning process. However, some manufacturers attempt to use unlined stacks with air-cooling. Under certain conditions, the temperature inside the stack can rise to a point where combustion of certain construction materials can begin, causing a building fire.
Can the burners be replaced?
  • Yes, however the style of cremation burners we use in our system have no moving parts, and therefore, do not need to be replaced.
What safety devices are present for overheating?
  • Our company prides itself as being the only manufacturer that offers a fully-automatic system based on the temperature of the equipment. As the temperature increases, the system provides the correct amount of both air and fuel to prevent overheating and constantly monitors and regulates itself.


What is the time needed for an obese case?
  • Obese cases take longer than regular cremations due to the amount of material that is being cremated, and with large amounts of fat being present, the unit is operated slower to better control the combustion process. The size of the individual is the main factor, although the gender also has to be taken into consideration. Most of our models operate at an average destruction rate of 100 pounds, with a maximum rate of 150 pounds per hour. The size of the body divided by 100 pounds per hour, plus heat-up time, is the best average.
What is the maximum temperature next to the retort during a cremation?
  • The outside of the retort is governed by code and should not exceed the ambient room temperature by 60 degrees.

What is the average cool-down time of the retort?
  • The cool-down period between cremation varies due to the amount of cremation being processed on any given day. A typical cool-down time is about 15 minutes, but this could be as long as 30 minutes if many cremations have been processed.
What are the requirements for the room that the retort will be placed in? (i.e., lighting, minimum room size in cubic feet, thickness of outside walls, ventilation, etc.)
  • Lighting is important, but do not install lights directly over the main door of the retort as the heat during loading and clean-out may affect them. The room size in cubic feet, once again, is not an issue, as long as the minimum clearances are met. A typical room size is 20 ft. by 30 ft. by 10 ft. depending on the model & size of the crematory. The thickness of the outside walls is not important. However, the thickness of the slab is. The minimum thickness is four inches of concrete, although six inches is recommended. The minimum ventilation requirements are a louvered vent that is capable of passing 2,500 cubic feet per minute of air per retort (24 In. X 24In.), is to be place in an outside wall of the crematory room at or below the height of the burners (below six feet on our systems).
Is it possible for one person to operate a retort from beginning to end? How easy is it?
  • Our systems are fully automated; we have just one main timer, an on/off switch, and four other switches that are set to automatic for most cremations. We have incorporated a casket cycle for those times that a wooden casket is used, and our whole process is temperature controlled from beginning to end for one-person operation.
What is the maximum decibel level of the retort during operation?
  • The decibel level of our systems is around 55.
What is the average time needed to cremate an average size case?
  • The average time depends on the size of the individual, the type of casket, and the temperature of the unit. An average time would be less than two hours in our N-20 series models, and 60 to 90 minutes in our Phoenix series models.
Are cremations after dark possible due to flames being visible?
  • Yes, our cremation systems incorporate the largest afterburning area available. This feature ensures that the gases are fully combustive in the chambers prior to exit from the stack, leaving only heat waves and not flames to be visible. Our stack cooling system also prevents the refractory liner from becoming too hot, causing a glow after dark.
With new technology coming out, how adaptable is the retort to the new technology? Can it be updated?
  • We are constantly working on new ideas to bring to the cremation industry. In fact, we have brought out more new innovations to this industry than all of the other manufacturers combined. While working on our research and development, we keep in mind the existing equipment and, whenever possible, keep the new items within the parameters and size of the older units so upgrade costs will be minimized.
Does the retort need to be cooled to a specific temperature before sweeping out the remains?
  • With our rear & side door retrieval systems, the remains can be removed at almost any temperature, as the main door needs only to be opened six to eight inches, and the remains are pushed to the rear of the chamber for removal through the side door.

Training & Maintenance

What type of training / certification is required to operate the retort?
  • We include our training & certification course with the purchase of a new or refurbished Crematory Retort. We also provide on-site training courses as well as group training sessions for participating associations. Our Crematory Manufacturer Operators Training Program (CMOTP) is highly recommended as we provide on-site operations training, maintenance procedures, obese case procedures, environmental impact study & much more. We provide a Crematory Operator Training Certificate (COTC) at the completion of each course. Our Crematory Operator Certificates (COC) last up to five years.
What type of support and assistance could be expected from your company to aid in meeting the new standards?
  • However, if retrofitting were required, we would offer full assistance to our customers affected by the change.
What is the average cost per year and per cremation to maintain the retort?
  • The average cost to maintain the system is $1,000.00 per year. However, we recommend that you open a maintenance fund and you place ten dollars per cremation in the fund. When it is time to replace the hearth, you will have between $15,000.00 and $20,000.00 for a project that costs about $7,000.00.
Is there someone local to keep up the maintenance and to call for repairs?
  • We have a team of factory trained service technicians & refractory masons nationwide to handle all your repair & maintenance needs. We also operate a 24/7 emergency service & maintenance hotline and can remedy most technical problems over the telephone. Should a service call be required, we would send the closest available tech to your location. We highly recommend an annual Tune-up on your retort(s) to avoid emergency service calls and costs. Contact one of our representatives today to find out more information.
Should we be aware of any special considerations or needs for placing a crematory inside a funeral home?
  • With every installation of a B&L Cremation Systems, Inc. unit, we provide an installation manual that clearly shows all of the information required to successfully install our system. We also provide information on the latest types of crematory layouts and can provide you with the names of industry professionals who specialize in building design and construction.
How many years does the average retort last before a new one has to be purchased?
  • In our experience, the average life of our systems exceeds 30 years. We, as a company, return to our existing installations periodically and offer upgrades that may not have been available when the original equipment was purchased, thereby adding years of use to the equipment. We have a staff of technical support personnel who can perform on-site repairs or rebuild your system and keep the unit at optimum operation. We also offer trade-ins on most makes & models or crematory retorts.
Please go into detail about the chamber bricks (i.e., average cost to replace, life, size comparisons, etc.).
  • An exclusive B&L Cremation Systems, Inc. feature is our made in the U.S.A. 6 In. thick refractory brick. Other manufacturers use a four and one-half series brick as well as inferior Chinese refractory. Which can cause detrimental issues to your retort & possibly fire hazards for your building. What this also means to the customer is up to 50 percent more durability, the knowledge of U.S.A. grade quality materials & fuel savings from the larger brick size. The average cost to re-brick one of our systems is $20,000.00. We expect over 8,000 hours of operation to be performed prior to a total re-bricking.
Can I expect a refresher course on the retort as information and education change?
  • Yes, Crematory Operator Certifications (COC) are only valid for up to 5 years. We offer on-site training classes at your facility on all makes & models of cremation retorts that can be held at the same time that we recalibrate and tune-up your equipment. We also offer group training sessions for participating associations.
What is the average number of days per year that the retort will be out of operation due to maintenance or repairs?
  • On an average basis, no more than five days per year should be missed due to maintenance or repairs. A cooldown period of at least 24 hours is required before our technicians can work on your retort. Your retort must be 100 F° or lower for our technicians to work inside your crematory.
Who will provide the required training & certification?
  • Our factory trained personnel will train & certify you on-site in the correct maintenance and operating procedures of your particular crematory retort. Our technicians are able to train & certify on all makes & models. We also provide continuing education & group training sessions for participating associations.
Do all models meet the emission standards?
  • Our equipment is designed by a team of engineers headed by Dr. Steve Looker, Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering & has been tested to show compliance by independent testing agencies. Our equipment far surpasses all EPA, CE, & CSA standards.
What is the most common maintenance required? After how many cases do we have to perform scheduled or preventative maintenance?
  • The most common maintenance is the yearly tune-up and calibration, and should be performed once per year or every 500 cremations, whichever comes first. Our recommended maintenance is every 500 cremations or annually. Cremation systems vibrate slightly due to the air blowers & burners, and this vibration can cause changes in the air input and fuel systems. This is one of the reasons why why we recommend a system service and re-calibration.
What is the exterior temperature of the stack, are there any fire codes to be concerned about?
  • The average temperature of the stack gases in our equipment, as tested by independent labs, has shown to be around 550 degrees. This gives the outside stack case a temperature of less than 150 degrees. In a worst-case scenario with the stack gasses at 2,000 degrees, the outside temperature of the stack would be 400 degrees. This temperature is below the kindling temperature of wood, and therefore, would not combust. To ensure that even this is not possible, a roof thimble constructed of 16-gauge galvanized steel is required to be placed around the stack, in the area that the stack comes within 18 inches of a combustible. This installation then meets the BOCA Mechanical Code for medium-heat appliances.
Is there someone local to keep up the maintenance and to call for repairs?
  • We have a team of factory trained service technicians & refractory masons nationwide to handle all your repair & maintenance needs. We also operate a 24/7 emergency service & maintenance hotline and can remedy most technical problems over the telephone. Should a service call be required, we would send the closest available tech to your location. We highly recommend an annual Tune-up on your retort(s) to avoid emergency service calls and costs. Contact one of our representatives today to find out more information.

Installation & Building

Who installs my crematory/retort? How long does it take?
  • Each of our cremation retorts are fully manufactured, quality controlled tested & run through a series of simulations in our factory before being shipped to your facility. Prior to its arrival, we will have sent to you an installation manual, which shows you in great detail every step of the installation procedure. We suggest that a copy of this manual be given to your subcontractors so everyone is aware of what is needed. We will guide you through every step, so feel free to contact us at any time with any questions or concerns. The average time of installation is about one day.
What type of support services is offered and can someone be reached 24 hours a day?
  • If a problem occurs with your equipment during our standard office hours, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm EST, you can call us toll free at 1-800-622-5411 & internationally at 727-541-4666 for technical support. If you need service after hours please call our 24/7 hotline 727-415-2361 and a technician will answer or promptly return your call to solve the problem.
Will the room temperature change?
  • Cremation retorts use about 2,500 cubic feet of air per minute and require an air louver of at least 24 square inches to be located in the outside wall of the retort room. This air volume typically keeps the room at ambient temperature.
Where can I purchase products after I have installed my retort?
  • We carry a complete line of cremation related products including remains processors, body coolers of all sizes, cardboard caskets, temporary urns, replacement clean out brushes, etc. Our experienced sales staff will be happy to assist you in choosing items that will enhance your crematorium for the betterment of your business.
Do we need to put the retort in a soundproof room?
  • There is no need to place our equipment in a soundproof room. Other manufacturers’ systems can exceed 96 decibels.


What are the average cubic feet of Natural Gas consumed during the average cremation?
  • The average fuel consumption of an N-20AA human retort is 700 to 1000 cubic feet per hour. This, of course, is dependent on the amount of cremations being processed and the body size.
What type of gas do B&L Cremations retorts run on?
  • Natural Gas or Propane. We have also manufactured oil burning crematories in select countries.
If I choose propane gas what size tank will I need?
  • Depending on the size of your selected retort. Our burners need a 1,000-gallon tank per million of BTU input.
I suspect I have a gas leak. What should I do?

· LEAVE: Leave the area immediately. Do not attempt to locate or stop the gas leak.

· DO NOT OPERATE RETORT: Do not smoke, use a cell phone, flashlight, turn on or off any lights or appliances or operate any kind of vehicle or equipment that could create a spark.

· CALL YOUR LOCAL GAS COMPANY IMMEDIATELY: If a leak is suspected near a natural gas transmission pipeline, call the number as shown on the yellow pipeline marker.

· If the smell of gas is particularly strong or no number is available, CALL 9-1-1.

What is the cost of fuel per cremation?
  • While there are a verity of factors that determine fuel consumption, the average cost of fuel per cremation is $0.16 per lb.
How many gallons of propane on average will a crematory use?
  • While there is a verity of factors that will determine fuel consumption. The maximum fuel consumption rate on a N-20AA human retort for propane will be 16 gallons an hr. but on average 10 gallons an hr.

Don’t see the Question & Answer you were looking for? Contact us and ask one of our experienced sales persons, technicians and/or engineers & we will do our best to help you out in any crematory related problem or situation you may have.