Feather flags are no doubt great at garnering attention from afar, primarily thanks to their fluttering actions. And the best thing is that you can use these flags both indoors and outdoors as per your needs.
Feather flags are also affordably priced, and make a great marketing investment for any business. The best way to maximize your return on investment lies in increasing the flag’s lifespan or longevity.
6 secrets to increasing your feather flag’s lifespan
Read on to learn about the six best-kept secrets businesses should know to improve the lifespan of their feather flags.
1. Choose your flag location wisely
Choose your location wisely. You no doubt will want to set up the flag on a spot that generates maximum exposure. But make sure you choose a site that is also safe for a flag.
It means that you should set up the spot someplace where there is minimal air pollution because air pollution isn’t suitable for the flag. It ends up graying the white areas, while UV rays can, with time, deteriorate and fade the fabric.
2. Ensure proper maintenance
The flag’s lifespan relies entirely on your climatic conditions and how long you leave it up. On average, a typical feather flag lasts for as many as six months to a year or two.
It depends on how long it’s kept outdoors under the sun if it’s kept in polluted areas, how much you use the banner, and how well you clean and maintain it.
Most flag manufacturers like vancke.com bond their flags with a heat seal process. This minimizes the risks of the flag fraying with time. However, at times, there is the chance of the edges ending up frayed with time.
If this is the case, you have to trim, reinforce, and re-hem the feather flag to extend its lifespan.
And all you need to do this is a standard sewing machine. You will need a sharp needle, and while cotton thread does the job well, nylon threads give a more robust and longer-lasting solution.
3. Takedown the flag during extreme weather conditions
There is the risk of heavy rains and windy conditions increasing the flag’s weight. This extra weight, in turn, puts some extra strain on the pole and can lead to potential damage.
The best way to avoid this is by dismantling the flag during heavy rain and windy conditions. You can always store it in the carrying bag accompanying the flag until the weather returns to normal.
And it’s once again safe to put up the flag. Just make sure that the flag is completely dry before you store it. Storing a wet flat can only lead to mold.
Remember, feather banners are designed only for marketing purposes. They are not fit to use in extreme weather conditions.
4. Regular washing
The good news is that you can wash most feather flags if and when it looks dirty. All you have to do is wash it in your regular washing machine using common detergents. It’s better to wash it using 40 degrees C hot water, and then air dries it.
As usual, you can store only dry flags.
At the same time, most banners don’t require ironing after washing them. However, some of them may end up wrinkled and need ironing. It is better first to set the iron on low heat and try ironing a small patch. You can continue ironing if there are no problems.
5. Even flags need their space.
Just like you need your space from others surrounding you, even flags need their space. You need to leave some surrounding area for the flags so that there’s no worry that it doesn’t catch or snag its pole on something.
For example, you have to keep the banners always from trees, fencing, and poles.
Besides, the warranty does not cover any damage to the flags and hardware by any force. So do not expect to get a replacement through a warranty claim if the banner gets caught on fencing.
6. Make sure the flags are correctly installed
Yes, feather flags are indeed easy to install, that you can do it even alone, without anyone else’s help. However, this doesn’t mean you can do a poor job of it.
It’s only if you install the flag correctly it will serve you for a longer time.
This means that if you are setting it up somewhere outdoors, then the spike base has to be correctly installed. Make sure you properly insert the tip of the pole into the reinforced corners.
And keeping the spike base head above the ground provides for easy rotation. While you should use tension cords, do not pull them too tightly.
Practicing these tips can help considerably extend the life of your feather banners.
Frequently asked questions about maintaining feather flags
Here are some commonly asked questions about cleaning and maintaining feather flags:
1. How can I steam and iron out wrinkles from vinyl feather flags?
Steaming and ironing banners make it look so much neater. However, this is something you need to be careful about.
It is no doubt that feather banners are durable, solid, and long-lasting. However, heat can create havoc on even the most robust material if not appropriately treated before use.
Most importantly, do not put the vinyl fabric flag into the washer. Doing this only leads to irreparable damage, with the colors running and fabric easily tearing.
Instead, you can follow these steps to safely wash and iron your feather flag:
- The first thing to do is remove any pole attached to the feather flag. It makes preparing your banner for ironing or steaming so much easier.
- Once the banner is ready, you next have to turn on your steamer at the lowest possible heat or setting.
- As always, it is better and easier to steam or iron the flag after hanging or laying it flat on a surface like an ironing board.
- Ironing is easier if you first smoothen out the flag. You can easily do this with the palm of your hand. It’s when your flag is smooth that you know it is ready for steaming or ironing.
- Use a slow and gentle back and forth motion while steaming or ironing your feather flag. Also, maintain the iron at medium pressure to reduce the chances of any tearing or burning of the flag.
2. How often should I clean feather flags?
Prolonged exposure to the outdoor UV rays can lead to cosmetic damage as the graphics are constantly exposed to:
- Direct sun exposure
Constant and regular sun exposure leads to the fading of the banner graphics and colors. It mainly happens if you leave your banner outdoor for months together. Periodically bringing the flag in and storing it helps reduce the chances of fading.
- Bad weather conditions
Bad weather conditions are not suitable for vinyl feather flags as it ends up dulling its protective laminate coating. So avoid keeping your banners outdoor during heavy rain, snowy and windy conditions.
It is better to bring them in and set them up late when things settle down. There’s anyway no point in having the banners up in such weather. No one will be able to see or even read what’s printed on it correctly.
- Dust and air pollutants
Naturally, feather flags that remain outdoors keeping exposed to dust and other air pollutants like smoke and dander. This is also why the likelihood of the banners getting polluted and dirty is higher in urban areas.
In short, you need to consider the flag’s outdoor use and graphics to determine the proper cleaning schedule.
- Generally, vinyl feather flags that remain outdoors throughout the year should be cleaned every 2-3 months.
- And in the case of banners that you keep on display for only a few hours or less a day and then store them, an annual cleaning is more than enough.
3. What are the best and safest detergents to use for cleaning custom feather flags?
You need not worry or bother yourself too much about this.
The general rule of thumb to follow is that it is always better to use a simple cleaning agent. In other words, you are safe to go to clean your banners with your regular detergent or soap.
You need the following products ready to wash your feather banner:
- Soft sponges
- Lukewarm water
- Mild soaps
- Microfiber towels or clothes
In addition, do not use the following products for cleaning purposes. These products will only end up damaging your vinyl flag graphics.
- Paint thinner
- Chemical solvents
- Scrubbing brushes
- Abrasive cloths
- Rubbing alcohol
- Acetone or any product that contains acetone
4. How do I wash outdoor marketing feather flags and banners?
These steps will show you how you can clean and store your feather banners so that you can use them for years to come.
- You first have to pat the banner surface flat and dry and smoothen out wrinkles using your hands. You can use the sunlight, steamers, or hairdryer on the lowest setting to eliminate any stubborn wrinkles.
- Next, get your soap and water solution ready by mixing lukewarm water with a mild detergent cleaner. You can use some dish or laundry soap or even a liquid detergent meant for delicate items.
- Dip the microfiber cloth in the solution, wring out excess water, and gently wipe the banner using long, gentle strokes. Work from the middle of the graphic towards its outer edges.
- Next, take a second microfiber cloth, dip it in clean water and rinse the banner surface to remove any soap residue. It is essential to do this because the remnant residue can end up discoloring, deteriorating, and peeling the flag.
- Once this is done, you need to take a third, clean microfiber cloth or towel to wipe the banner gently. Again, start from the center, working towards the outer edge.
- It is when the flag is dry that you can slowly roll close your banner. Make sure the graphics remain facing inside and not outside while moving. It is always better to proceed and not fold vinyl graphics because the folds create permanent creases.
- Store the banner in its carrying bag until its subsequent use.
5. How do I treat spot stains on feather flags?
You can use the help of the following tips to get rid of any problematic stains on your feather flags:
- First, try cleaning the stain using a sponge and soap, and water mixture. As always, using gentle strokes is always a better option.
- If soap and water don’t work, apply some mild glass cleaner on the flat surface and scrub lightly using a sponge. However, it is better to read the cleaner ingredients before using them to avoid harsh solvents like alcohol or bleach.
If you are not sure about the contents, test the product before use on a tiny, inconspicuous spot. Apply and wait for a few minutes. You can apply it to the entire flag if there is no discoloration or fading.
These frequently asked questions should answer most of your doubts and queries related to cleaning and maintaining feather flags. These answers, together with the secrets mentioned above, go a long way in prolonging your feather flag’s life.
It is also better to have your feather flags printed by a reputed flag manufacturer like vancke.com. They are professionals at the job and have a wide range of designs for you to select from.
Besides, your feather flags reach you with multiple bases to choose from and use as per your requirements. And there’s also a handy carrying bag for storing and transporting the feather wherever needed. The bag fits into your car trunk so that you can conveniently transport your banner from one venue.