Does your flag look like the one above? If so, then a replacement might be in order. We are often asked how best to prolong the life of a flag. Below we have compiled a list of best practices so you can get the most out of every flag purchase.
Cleaning is very important to the care and long term viability of any flag. If you have it flying 24/7 then we recommend cleaning the flag every 3-6 months. We suggest a cold water wash, by hand or gentle cycle, then hang the flag to dry. Some customers prefer dry-cleaning and many dry-cleaning companies will offer this service free of charge for the American flag. Cleaning the flag helps to remove the buildup of grime, grit and air pollutants that can cause the flag material to decay before its time.
The most overlooked aspect of flag care is resting your flag. Material will last longer and hold up better if it has a chance to rest every once in a while. We recommend that customers buy two flags at the same time and then rotate them every couple of months. This will greatly extend the life of both flags and give you plenty of time to wash and hem the flag that is “resting”.
If the fly end of the flag starts to fray, the sooner it can be trimmed off and re-hemmed the better. Re-hemming the flag will increase the lifespan by preventing the fraying from continuing along the seams and other weak spots.
Arguably the biggest factor affecting a flag’s durability is weather. Any rough storm can destroy any flag so be aware and, if you can, bring your flag inside during inclement weather. If you wouldn’t want to be outside then chances are your flag will require extra attention after the storm has passed. Some customers choose to honor the flag regardless of the weather. If this describes you then be sure to take that factor into consideration when purchasing and caring for your flags.
Tune in next time when we discuss proper flag disposal and expected longevity.