Only flags made specifically for exterior use should be displayed outdoors.
Do not expose your flag to rain, snow or abnormally high winds. These conditions will shorten its life considerably.
Do not fly a wet flag. Flying a heavy, wet flag in the wind puts excessive strain on the fabric and stitching, and will greatly reduce the life of your flag
Should the flag become wet, it should be spread out and allowed to dry completely. Do not fold or roll-up a wet or damp flag.
To keep its rich colors looking bright, clean your flag regularly, before soiling and discoloration from dirt, smoke, dust and other airborne contaminants “set” in the fabric.
Outdoor flags can be hand-washed with warm water and a mild soap, then thoroughly rinsed and spread out to dry.
Professional dry cleaning is recommended for indoor/parade flags. Incidentally, some establishments will clean Old Glory free of charge.
Do not place the flag where the wind will whip it against rough surfaces, tree branches, wires, cables, etc. The smallest tear can soon result in a tattered flag.
Keep pole surfaces free of heavy dirt, rust, scale and corrosion that could damage your flag.
Inspect your flag regularly for signs of wear. In particular, look for “normal wear” fabric or thread breaks which may occur in the “fly” end (the end farthest from the pole). Trimming off and re-hemming torn or frayed ends will help extend the life of your flag.
Note to Large Flag Users (12' x 18' and Up)
Larger flags naturally represent a more significant financial investment and, as such, should be given maximum protection.
Consider having two flags and rotating them on a regular basis. Tests have shown that flag fibers actually benefit from periodic “rest”. Also, you will not be without a flag while one is being cleaned or repaired.
Keep your flag in good repair. Pay special attention for thread breaks which may occur in the “fly” end (the end farthest from the pole). Trimming off and re-hemming torn or frayed ends will help extend the life of your flag.