A Guide to Caring for Outdoor Flags in the Winter

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A Guide to Caring for Outdoor Flags in the Winter

Having outdoor flags is an incredible way to display your patriotism for your country. The summer and winter require slightly different types of attention. With this guide to caring for outdoor flags in the winter, you’ll quickly learn the best ways to ensure yours lasts through the winter months.

Clean Frequently

All seasons bring unpredictable weather, sun damage, dirt, and debris. While you can do what you can to take your flag down before a storm, normal weathering will always be present.

A common mistake new flag owners make is forgetting to regularly clean and maintain the flag. Believe it or not, you can place outdoor flags in the washing machine! Simply wash yours on a gentle cycle with mild detergent. Allow the flag to completely air dry afterward to keep it from freezing when you place it back outside in cold temperatures. Putting it out wet will cause more damage to the material and diminish its lifespan.

Avoid Storms

At the first sign of any inclement weather, you should take the flag down and place it inside. Check the weather forecast for any indication of rain, snow, or windstorms. Remember that winds over 11 miles per hour are too high for an outdoor flag to endure. Winter weathering will fade and diminish the flag’s quality over time. Bringing it inside before storms will protect its condition and bright colors!

What Happens if You Forget?

Forgetting to bring the flag indoors during a storm isn’t the end of the flag’s life. Once the storm passes, take the flag down and properly examine it.

Look for any serious damages that might need repairing. If it’s wet, lay it out flat to dry entirely. You might also consider washing it, then allowing it to dry so that the flag is fresh before you return it to its flagpole outside!

Bring Indoors at the End of the Day

While you should always bring flags inside during inclement weather, you should also take them down just before sunset. This further minimizes the risk of damaging the flag at night. It’s also a sign of respect to lower the American flag at night. If you don’t illuminate the American flag during the night, you shouldn’t keep it in the air.

Check the Flag’s and Flagpole’s Condition

The winter can be harsh on the condition of the flag and flagpole. When you go to take down the flag at the end of the day, conduct a quick inspection. You never want to risk a damaged flagpole breaking and falling onto your house or a valuable flag becoming ruined without noticing. Check features like the joints, clips, ground sleeve, flagpole, and flag itself.

Taking the proper steps to care for your outdoor flag in the winter is the right way to ensure it lasts a long time and always looks beautiful.

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