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The Life Span of a Flag

How Long Will An Outdoor Flag Last?

There really is not a singular answer to this question. We have seen many customers with flags that last for years before they tear or fade. Other customers who use their flags in a tough location or for an unusual purpose may need to replace their flags several times a year. There are a variety of factors that will impact how long your flag lasts.

Factors That Impact Outdoor Flag Lifespan

Some important factors that will impact how long your flag lasts include:

  • Weather
  • If you are in a particularly windy location (see our wind map for more details on this) or an open exposed location with no natural windbreaks, your flag will likely need to be replaced more quickly than one that is flown in an area with less wind and more shelter.

  • Climate and Sun
  • The dyes used on the flags are meant for outdoor use, but a flag baking in the Arizona sun all day is going to fade much more quickly than a flag flying in the cloudy skies of Seattle.

  • Usage
  • Do you leave the flag up all the time, 24/7? A flag that is flown constantly in all kinds of weather will obviously deteriorate faster than a flag that is brought in at night and during inclement weather.

    Do you fly your flag off the home (somewhat sheltered) or on an exposed 30' flagpole? Flags that are sheltered tend to last longer than those that are flown in an exposed area.

    We don't recommend using flags on vehicles, but many people do. Flying a flag this way takes a significant toll on the flag, and they just aren't going to last very long.

A Typical Flag Lifespan

With such variation in degrees of usage, varying and unpredictable weather patterns, and differences in geography, there just isn't one good answer to the question of how long an outdoor flag will last. The closest we have is that, per the American Legion, the U.S. Government generally expects a nylon or cotton bunting flag to last about 90 days, based on daily usage from sunrise to sunset.

Like all the best things in life, flags won't last forever and there is a reason most all flag companies cannot offer a warranty on their flags. However, there are ways to care for your flag that will help to extend its lifespan!

Hoping to keep your flag in good shape for as long as possible? Check out these tips for caring for flags that can help to increase their longevity!

Looking for tips to help you clean your flag? Find our top tips for properly cleaning and caring for your flag here.

Wondering what to do with a flag that is past its prime? Learn what to do with a flag that is damaged and ready for retirement.