Tips for Taking
Care of Your American Flag
There are a million reasons to order a custom flag. From hand flags for sporting events to garden flags that are given as gifts, banners that are used at trade shows, and bunting that is used to decorate a party, most people spend a lot more time thinking about how their flag looks than how they’re going to take care of it properly.
That’s a mistake. No matter what kind of flag you order, making sure you care for it properly is the only way you can make sure it lasts.
That’s especially the case if you have an American flag.
As you may know, there are some rules that need to be followed if you are charged with the display and care of a USA flag. Allow us to provide you with all the tips you need to know in order to make sure you take care of your flag the right way.
Most flags are relatively informal. You can hang them on the wall, let them flap in the wind, or even drape them over a table. That’s one of the great things about custom flags—there are so many ways to display them!
Although there are many ways you can display the United States flag, you have to make sure you are doing it the right way.
When flying the flag on a pole, make sure you follow these rules:
- Never hang your flag backward or upside down. The stars should always be placed on top of the flag and to the left.
- Fly your flag at half-staff when appropriate. Make sure to raise the flag to its peak at the end of the day before it is lowered.
- Flags that fly at night should be illuminated. Otherwise, the American flag should be taken inside at the end of the day.
- If displaying other flags, the American flag should fly above the others.
- When displayed with other flags, the USA flag should be hoisted first in the morning and taken down last in the evening.
- Never display a discolored, tattered, or damaged flag.
You don’t have to display your American flag on a pole. You can hang your flag on the wall too! Just make sure you do it right.
When hanging the flag on the wall, make sure the stars are positioned to the observer’s left. If hung in the window, the flag should be displayed for those walking by.
When it comes to most flags, it doesn’t matter if the flag ends up bunched up in a box or if it accidentally ends up on the floor. You can simply smooth out the flag and use it again.
A higher level of respect and dedication comes with owning the American flag. That means taking the time to learn how to fold it the right way for storage.
Your flag should never touch the ground if it can be helped, but that doesn’t mean accidents don’t happen. If your flag does touch the ground, it’s okay to use it again, as long as it’s in good display condition.
It used to be the case that good flag etiquette dictated that the United States flag should never get wet. With specialized materials that are made to withstand inclement weather, that’s no longer the case. Not only can you fly your flag outdoors when it’s raining, but you also can, and should, wash it too! It’s even recommended in order to keep your flag flying in good condition!
Just make sure you launder your flag properly. That means machine washing your flag on the gentle cycle with a gentle cleaner. Don’t put your flag in the dryer. Instead, lay it flat to dry.
If your flag has a fringe, or if you’re worried about laundering your flag yourself, you can take it to a dry cleaner. This is also a good idea if you have an indoor flag that isn’t as durable as flags made out of outdoor materials.
Did you know you can repair your American flag too? Fix small rips and tears quickly and you can prevent them from running and ruining your flag.
What about military flags? Because they carry the same significance as the United States flag, it’s usually recommended to care for them the same way you would the American flag.