An American flag is not just another piece of fabric, but an object to treat with reverence. Although a properly stored flag should avoid most spots and damage, if you’re flying it outside, inevitably dust and dirt will accumulate. Tradition and etiquette around displaying the flag has a complex story and history. You probably already know, for example, that flags should never be flown upside down (it’s a traditional signal of distress) or at night without a light.
However, it’s also important to know that etiquette dictates you honor the flag by not displaying it if the fabric is dirty, torn, or worn out. There are several steps you can take to get the most out of your flag’s life. First of all, upon acquiring an American flag, it is extremely important to learn how to both fold and store it properly. This should go without saying, but always make sure that it’s properly dried out (ideally laid flat on a table in a well-ventilated room) if it gets rained or snowed on. You must also plan to clean it regularly (if you’re flying it outside) to avoid long-term damage.
This leads us to our main point: eventually, even if you’ve been taking careful care of your flag, it will need to be cleaned. This is where it can get confusing. You probably know most of the typical “honor” rules here, including:
“No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America; the flag should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental colors, State flags, and organization or institutional flags are to be dipped only as a mark of honor.”
That does not mean, however, that a flag needs to stay dirty! In fact, it’s disrespectful not to clean your flag. At Red Hanger Cleaners, we are capable of dry-cleaning flags, uniforms, wedding dresses, and other precious objects with care, respect, and extensive professional experience. Our careful process ensures that the material is not only preserved, but comes out looking beautiful.
During the month of July, Red Hanger cleaners will be honoring our country and its patriots with free flag cleaning. Be assured that we are trained and experienced to respect the flag’s code regarding handling and cleaning. If your flag needs attention or you have further questions, please contact us today!