Maintaining a Flag

July 2, 2008

An American flag showing the stars and stripes.Celebrate Independence Day, display your U.S. flag using the proper flag etiquette.

Standards of Respect

The Flag Code, which formalizes and unifies the traditional ways in which we give respect to the flag, also contains specific instructions on how the flag is not to be used. They are:

The flag should be cleaned and mended when necessary. When a flag is so worn it is no longer fit to serve as a symbol of our country, it should be destroyed by burning in a dignified manner.

Displaying the Flag Outdoors

When the flag is displayed from a staff projecting from a window, balcony, or a building, the union should be at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half staff.

When it is displayed from the same flagpole with another flag - of a state, community, society or Scout unit - the flag of the United States must always be at the top except that the church pennant may be flown above the flag during church services for Navy personnel when conducted by a Naval chaplain on a ship at sea.


When the flag is displayed over a street, it should be hung vertically, with the union to the north or east. If the flag is suspended over a sidewalk, the flag's union should be farthest from the building.

When flown with flags of states, communities, or societies on separate flag poles which are of the same height and in a straight line, the flag of the United States is always placed in the position of honor - to its own right.

The other flags may be smaller but none may be larger.

No other flag ever should be placed above it.

The flag of the United States is always the first flag raised and the last to be lowered.

When flown with the national banner of other countries, each flag must be displayed from a separate pole of the same height. Each flag should be the same size. They should be raised and lowered simultaneously. The flag of one nation may not be displayed above that of another nation.


Raising and Lowering the Flag

The flag should be raised briskly and lowered slowly and ceremoniously. Ordinarily it should be displayed only between sunrise and sunset. It should be illuminated if displayed at night.

The flag of the United States of America is saluted as it is hoisted and lowered. The salute is held until the flag is unsnapped from the halyard or through the last note of music, whichever is the longest.

Displaying the Flag Indoors

When on display, the flag is accorded the place of honor, always positioned to its own right. Place it to the right of the speaker or staging area or sanctuary. Other flags should be to the left.

The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of states, localities, or societies are grouped for display.


When one flag is used with the flag of the United States of America and the staffs are crossed, the flag of the United States is placed on its own right with its staff in front of the other flag.

When displaying the flag against a wall, vertically or horizontally, the flag's union (stars) should be at the top, to the flag's own right, and to the observer's left.

Parading and Saluting the Flag

When carried in a procession, the flag should be to the right of the marchers. When other flags are carried, the flag of the United States may be centered in front of the others or carried to their right. When the flag passes in a procession, or when it is hoisted or lowered, all should face the flag and salute.

The Salute

To salute, all persons come to attention. Those in uniform give the appropriate formal salute. Citizens not in uniform salute by placing their right hand over the heart and men with head cover should remove it and hold it to left shoulder, hand over the heart. Members of organizations in formation salute upon command of the person in charge.

The Pledge of Allegiance and National Anthem

The pledge of allegiance should be rendered by standing at attention, facing the flag, and saluting.

When the national anthem is played or sung, citizens should stand at attention and salute at the first note and hold the salute through the last note. The salute is directed to the flag, if displayed, otherwise to the music.

The Flag in Mourning

To place the flag at half staff, hoist it to the peak for an instant and lower it to a position half way between the top and bottom of the staff. The flag is to be raised again to the peak for a moment before it is lowered. On Memorial Day the flag is displayed at half staff until noon and at full staff from noon to sunset.

The flag is to be flown at half staff in mourning for designated, principal government leaders and upon presidential or gubernatorial order.

When used to cover a casket, the flag should be placed with the union at the head and over the left shoulder. It should not be lowered into the grave.

Let Freedom Ring! God bless the USA!

For more information on our Flag, go to:

Source: Taken from

By Diana from Prospect, KY

Read More Comments

3 More Solutions

This page contains the following solutions.

We like to fly our American flag 24 hours a day, and living where the wind blows almost non-stop we go through a lot of flags. My father told me this secret to saving them.


April 6, 2020

I love to fly my flag everyday, but it usually only lasts one year and then I have to replace it due to shredding, elements, etc. This time, I decided to protect one side of it with Heat and Bond (clear) to protect it. Since I just completed this today, I won't know how well it works until more time has passed.

Adhering Heat and Bond to stiffen an American flag.


Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

March 16, 2009

Does anyone know where I could purchase about 10 to 20 plastic flag holders? The kind that clip on to a car window. You usually see sports teams or national flags displayed this way. I am trying to have some flags made for a charity that takes disabled children on trips and travels in vans "caravan-style".

Often the vans get separated traveling on highways. This would be a good tool to keep the group together. I have checked online and only found vendors that sell very large quantities. I cannot find any distributor locally either. Any ideas would be great. Thanks!

Kathleen from Chicago, IL


March 16, 20090 found this helpful

I have found them with flags already attached at the 99¢ store.

March 17, 20090 found this helpful

I suggest you could contact a funeral home. They have car flags for their processions and would know where to get them. They might even help out with paying for them!


Bronze Request Medal for All Time! 59 Requests
March 18, 20090 found this helpful

I also was going to suggest contacting a few funeral homes to see where they purchase theirs.

March 19, 20090 found this helpful

Is this what you are looking for?


Bronze Request Medal for All Time! 59 Requests
March 19, 20090 found this helpful

April 14, 20090 found this helpful

I bought them at the dollar tree store.

December 24, 20180 found this helpful

You can go to

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