Who says you can’t display the American flag at home? Nobody’s stopping you from showing off this proud reminder of the centuries-long history of America and a ubiquitous symbol of liberty and justice. It’s your right as a citizen to raise the flag on your property in celebration, pride, and respect for the United States of America.
To ensure your readiness to display the symbol of American freedom on your property, we revisit flag etiquette, provide tips for choosing the right flag and flagpole, and share reminders about residential flagpole installation. Let’s get into it!
Flag Types: What You Can Raise on Your Property
The American flag isn’t the only type of flag that you can fly on your residential property. You can also raise other flags for awareness or representation.
- National Flags: Show off your patriotism regardless of your nationality
- Military Flags: Let the world know that an armed forces member lives here
- Political Flags: Declare your alliance or show your support for social movements
- Sports Flags: Show your support for your favorite athlete or local sports team
- Organization Flags: Represent your civic, fraternal, or religious organization
- Awareness Flags: Express solidarity with causes, charities, and social campaigns
Flag Etiquette: Displaying the American Flag
Eager to fly Old Glory on your residential property? It’s essential to review the rules and etiquette stated by the U.S. Flag Code to ensure that you’re treating the national symbol of liberty and patriotism with respect and dignity.
Note When You Can Fly the American Flag
You’re free to fly the American flag on your residential flagpole all year round. However, the Flag Code especially recommends it during the Fourth of July and on other major holidays, such as Veterans Day, Labor Day, and, of course, Flag Day.
Note that the American flag must be flown at half-mast until noon on Memorial Day. You can only raise it to the full mast for the rest of the day after that.
Never Let the Flag Touch the Ground
Be careful whenever you’re handling the flag and lowering it. Do your best so that it never touches the ground. If it accidentally hits the ground and gets dirty, ensure the flag is clean and in good condition before raising it again.
Observe Times When You Have to Fly the Flag at Half-mast
The American flag must always be flown at half-mast for remembrance and times of national mourning, such as remembrance events and the demise of high government officials. Remember to raise the flag to the peak before lowering it at the end of the day.
Know When You Can Fly the American Flag
You can keep the stars and stripes at full-mast 24 hours a day as long as it is appropriately illuminated after sunset. Also, homeowners are advised not to raise the flag at times of inclement weather — unless you have an all-weather flag made of non-absorbent materials, that is. In this case, just make sure it remains in good condition.
Dispose of Worn and Torn Flags in a Dignified Manner
Old Glory remains susceptible to wear regardless of how high-quality your flag is or how well you take care of it. You can repair small tears by hand. However, you have to properly dispose of torn or faded American flags and replace them with a new ones.
According to the Federal Flag Code, unserviceable flags must be burned respectfully and ceremoniously. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, or if burning synthetic materials is illegal in your jurisdiction, you may turn the flag to local Scout troops or during flag disposal ceremonies on Flag Day.
Always Fly the Stars and Stripes Above All Other Flags
If you plan to fly multiple flags on your property, ensure the American flag flies higher than the other flags. But if you have no choice but to have all flags at the same level, always put the American flag on the leftmost side.
When hoisting the flags, the American flag must always be raised first and lowered last.
Choosing the Right Flag and Flagpole For Your Home
Should you go for a tapered flagpole for a nylon flag? Is it better to install a telescoping flagpole for a polyester flag? Here, we provide tips so you can quickly narrow down your options when choosing a flag and a flagpole to install at home.
What Flag Material Should You Pick?
American flags are commonly made of nylon, polyester, and cotton.
Nylon is a lightweight material that flies proudly even in low-wind areas. It features bright, vivid colors, so the stars and stripes aren’t fading anytime soon.
Polyester is ideal for high-wind areas. The material is heavier and sturdier than nylon. However, constant exposure to sunlight and precipitation may cause slight fading.
Cotton is a well-suited flag material for ceremonial and commemorative purposes. This material features rich colors and should fly primarily on major holidays like Independence Day and Flag Day.
What’s the Ideal Flagpole Size For Your House?
The rule of thumb when finding the right flagpole size is to ensure the flag is horizontally one-third or one-fourth of the flagpole’s height. The standard residential flagpole height ranges from 15 to 20 feet — the latter is the flagpole height limit in many areas.
Residential Flagpole Installation Reminders
Planning to install a residential flagpole sometime soon? Here are some reminders to help you ensure the strength, stability, and durability of your flagpole:
- Choose the right flagpole size and material based on your area's average weather and wind intensity
- Ensure your flagpole is not too close to power lines, windows, and other areas easily damaged by accident
- Whether in the backyard or front of your house, create a deep and strong foundation to ensure that the flagpole stays upright
- If you’re installing multiple flagpoles, ensure ample space between them. Have at least six inches of space between the flags
- If you plan to install your residential flagpole by yourself, always follow the instructions manual—otherwise, contact flagpole companies for assistance.
The American flag, organization flags, and awareness flags — these are only some of the many types of residential flags that you can display on your property. Show off your pride by investing in sturdy residential flagpoles that can withstand all weather conditions and preserve the dignity of your flag for many years in the future.