Regular cleaning and repair of your American flag will not only prolong its useful life, especially if displayed outdoors, but also show respect for the symbol of our living nation. That’s why Best Cleaners cleans any American flag for free throughout the year, and why we gathered the following guidelines and tips for knowing when to take action to keep your stars and stripes flying high for years to come.
Best Flag Cleaning: The first step to keeping your flag free of dirt or stains is to know the rules for proper display. According to the U.S. Flag Code, “the American flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged. It should not be displayed on days when the weather is bad, except when an all-weather flag is used.” Nylon, Polyester or Knit Polyester are all materials that can withstand the elements. For the best results, do not expose your flag to rain, snow or extremely high winds; these forces of nature can shorten its life considerably. If the flag becomes wet, it should be carefully spread out and allowed to dry completely. Never fold or roll-up a wet or damp flag.
Synthetic material flags such as nylon or polyester can be machine washed with cold water and a mild detergent. Do not let the flag stand in the wash water for extended periods of time or some color transfer may occur from the red stripes to the white stripes. Synthetic material flags should be placed flat to dry. Natural fiber flags such as cotton and wool should be handled with greater care. They can be spot cleaned or dry cleaned. Be sure flags are completely dry before correctly folding and sealing in a moisture-proof and bug-proof plastic bag. Store in a safe, cool, dry place.
Best Flag Repair: A small tear will quickly become a big tear if not repaired immediately. Typically the fly end of the flag is the first section to fray as it whips in the wind. When this occurs the end should be cut off and re-hemmed quickly before further damage develops. However, be aware that your flag can only be repaired a certain number of times before it becomes too short to be a regulation-sized American Flag (maintaining the width at 1.9 times the height). Flags that are excessively worn or frayed should be retired properly following the U.S. Flag Code which states, “the flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.” Many veterans organizations, scouting troops or ROTC groups will accept tattered flags and dispose of them properly.
Best’s Free Flag Cleaning: If your American flag is showing any signs of wear and tear, simply bring it to the Best Cleaners’ location near you (or leave it for your home delivery driver). Best’s dry cleaning service is free of charge … no coupon or special promotional code needed. It is our honor to use our expertise to ensure that each and every American flag is in the best condition possible, and to make that service available for all.