Selecting a Flagpole

7 Steps to Selecting a Flagpole for Your Home or Business

Picking out a new flagpole for your home or business can be a daunting task. Not to mention the questions you'll be asking yourself like where am I going to put it? What kind do I get? What size do I need? Will it handle the wind in my area? With so many different options and features available on the market you can be left wondering if you will ever get a new one up just because of information overload. But! That is where we step in! In this article, I'm going to be covering some of the flagpole basics to assist you in selecting the right flagpole for you and your needs in 7 easy steps.

  1. Determine the Location, Where is Your New Flagpole Going to be Installed? Next to Your House? In Your Yard?
  2. Composition, What is Your New Flagpole Going to be Made of?
  3. Flagpole Height - Correct Flag Size for Pole
  4. Determine Windspeed for your area
  5. Options and Features - Comparing Commercial, Residential and Telescoping Flagpoles
  6. Appearance and Looks
  7. Your Flagpole Budget

1. Determine the Location, Where is Your New Flagpole Going to be Installed? Next to Your House? In Your Yard?

First things first, is answering the question of where your flagpole is going to be. This is going to be your starting point with everything else following like a gentle tubing ride down a lazy river. In figuring out where your flagpole is going to be installed, we can then cover the next host of factors to be considered such as composition, height, wind speed, options, features, and budget.

Most customers like to place their flagpoles in a prominent area with an excellent line of sight. This means that you don't have any obstructions blocking the view of your flagpole or its immediate surroundings such as trees, powerlines, or any other structures. You'll want to be sure your flag isn't going to hit anything either but to wave carefree. The visibility of your flag is an essential factor when scouting out a potential location. If you want your flagpole to be seen from the street, then simply wander down there and try to visualize how that might look.

They can be placed closer to your main building or home or put in the middle of the yard, this is all going to be a matter of preference and what you can do. The main objective here is to have your flagpole look like it belongs there and not seem out of place. To be a great spot to hoist your American flag or any other flag you choose and have it wave majestically and proudly. Putting your flag in the right spot will just look right and ensure that you get to see Old Glory in all 'er glory.

With the installation of a new flagpole: you will need to make sure there isn't anything that it will interfere with. This has to not only do with again, trees, power lines, and other buildings but also with things that may be underground such as telephone, internet, and power lines, as well as water and sewer lines as most flagpoles will need to have a small portion in the ground. Always remember to call before you dig and to check your property to find out where wells, septic tanks, and any other obstructions may be. And as always be sure to check with your local municipality to see if there are any laws, ordinances, or regulations you may have to follow when erecting a new flagpole.

2. Composition, What is Your Outdoor Flagpole Going to be Made of?

What your flagpole is made of is going to be taken into consideration based on where it is going to reside. We offer both aluminum and fiberglass flagpoles, each with its own merits, benefits, and advantages.

Aluminum flagpoles are along the lines of the standard flagpole, with a heavier weight, lighter price tag, and in some cases a little more prone to oxidation due to salt water and weather. This is usually countered with an anodized coating to offer extra protection. They can also be cleaned fairly easily with special cleaning agents and in some cases a simple soap and water solution.

Fiberglass flagpoles, on the other hand, are lightweight, non-conductive, and more apt to stand up against natural corrosion and elements such as salt water that you would find on the coastlines and weather. These do cost more than the traditional aluminum flagpoles but help you to rest easy knowing lightning isn't going to strike it nor will it rust. Fiberglass is a strong material that bodes well against wind, salt, and other weather that would give their aluminum flagpole counterparts a tough time.

3. Flagpole Height - Correct Flag Size for Pole

Next, we are going to be looking at flagpole height. Flagpole heights can range anywhere from 20ft to 90ft and higher. In deciding on height, aesthetics are going to play an important factor with these numbers changing based on where you will be placing it.

For most residential houses and in some commercial areas, a flagpole of 20 to 25ft will be more than adequate and fit the bill wonderfully. This logic is in effect because many homes and businesses are only around one to two stories tall with this size flagpole looking rather well and like it belongs right next to them. You wouldn't want to put a 50ft flagpole next to a one-story ranch as this is a bit excessive. The same logic is in effect when placing a flagpole next to a taller building, where a 20ft flagpole will look out of place next to an apartment complex or office building that is four-plus stories tall.

It should be noted: that most residential and commercial areas do have certain laws, regulations, and other ordinances regarding flagpole height and installation, so you will want to check with your local government offices to see if and what these are.

Size Chart for Height of Flagpole and Flag Dimensions

Below is a chart showing what size flag should be flown with what size flagpole.

Height of Flagpole Minimum Flag Size Maximum Flag Size
15 ft 2.5ft x 4ft 3ft x 5ft
20 ft 2ft x 3ft 3ft x 5ft
25 ft 3ft x 5ft 4ft x 6ft
30 ft 4ft x 6ft 5ft x 8ft
40 ft 5ft x 8ft 8ft x 12ft
50 ft 6ft x 10ft 10ft x 15ft
50 ft 6ft x 10ft 10ft x 15ft
60 ft 8ft x 12ft 12ft x 18ft
70 ft 10ft x 15ft 15ft x 25ft
80 ft 10ft x 19ft 20ft x 30ft

4. Determine Windspeed for your area

Now that we have covered the location, composition, and height, we can now move on to windspeed. Where your flagpole is going to be spending its days and nights is going to play an essential factor in how strong your flagpole needs to be. If your area is prone to hurricanes, storms, and heavy winds, a low-rated flagpole just isn't going to cut it. The same can also be said about areas that only receive mild gusts of wind from time to time where a storm-rated flagpole just isn't going to be necessary.

To get an idea of the average wind speeds in your area, you can view our chart showing average wind speeds all across the United States, right here.

Most of our flagpoles come rated in three different windspeed categories, medium, high, and storm.

For most of our customers and most areas around the country, a medium-rated flagpole is going to work just fine. These are going to cover windspeeds from approximately 71 miles per hour with a flag and 91 miles per hour without one. This number is going to vary from flagpole to flagpole and can be checked in most cases for the individual product on the product page in the additional information tab.

Customers who live in higher wind locations such as around lakes, plains, and in mountainous and wide open areas may benefit from our high windspeed-rated flagpoles. These flagpoles run at about 95 miles per hour with a flag and 121 miles per hour without one. Again, this is just an approximation for most of our flagpoles.

Finally, for our customers that live in the Great Lakes region, tornado alley, an island or peninsula, and other coastal locations, a storm-rated flagpole is going to be recommended for you. These areas tend to be a little more prone and susceptible to storms, high winds, and even hurricanes. Height above sea level, shorelines, and wide open spaces can also affect wind requirements as well, Our storm-rated flagpole comes with the heaviest price tag but also offers the most security with windspeed coverage at 120 miles per hour flagged and 211 miles per hour without. Individual windspeeds will vary on individual products as well.

Wall Thickness

Something that you will more than likely look into down the line is going to be wall thickness. This just correlates to the flagpole's overall strength, durability, and resistance to wind. The thicker an interior wall is the more strength and wind resistance the flagpole has.

5. Options and Features - Comparing Commercial, Residential and Telescoping Flagpoles

You may notice that we have flagpoles of all kinds on our site, these include commercial and commercial grade, residential, and telescopic flagpoles. Each one of these is going to possess its own abilities and general attributes.

Commercial Flagpoles

One of the more price-heavy flagpoles on the site, commercial flagpoles offer quite literally a heavier and sturdier pole. While these are made for commercial areas, this doesn't mean that you can't install them next to your home in a residential one. Most of these flagpoles come with a thicker interior wall and are made with what is simply known as commercial-grade aluminum alloy. More often than not, commercial flagpoles have a higher tolerance for wind and wind speeds.

Residential Flagpoles

Residential flagpoles are a wonderful standard and walk right down the middle of the road in their price and their qualities. A quintessential standard flagpole that is fit for most jobs and flag needs, They can offer a little less on windspeed tolerance, so be sure to check the average winds in your area to see how much your future flagpole needs to handle.

Telescopic Flagpoles

A simple solution to a worrisome topic for most flag owners is wind. With a telescopic flagpole, you can take that right out of the equation. These flagpoles offer you the ability to raise and lower your flagpole with the click of a button. This makes changing the flag that much easier, but also calms your nerves when it comes to inclement weather coming through your area. These flagpoles are the easiest to install and do not have a halyard. Telescoping flagpoles are not available in a commercial grade, and should only be used in areas that will not experience high wind conditions. While telescopic flagpoles are some of the least expensive types we carry, they do serve an ample purpose.

External and Internal Halyards

Along with the different kinds of flagpoles available, you will also find several features and different styles. Most flagpoles will feature an external halyard system, which means that the flagpole rope is going to be on the outside of the flagpole. This is one of the simpler options, although the halyard or rope will need to be replaced as time goes on.

If vandalism or tampering is a concern, you may want to check out an internal halyard system. This sees the flag halyard or rope on the inside of the flagpole and is usually only accessed via a lock and key system. This ensures that only someone with the proper equipment will have access to your flagpole. The only drawback with this system is the difficulty in changing the halyard if it breaks.

6. Appearance and Looks

One of the last things you are going to be looking for when selecting a flagpole is cosmetics and how your flagpole looks. Aluminum flagpoles are available in a variety of different finishes with most offering a satin aluminum finish as well as an anodized black, bronze, and clear. An anodized finish is an extra layer of protection between your flagpole and the elements. Fiberglass flagpoles typically come in white.

As you can see, choosing the correct flagpole to fit your needs should be a decision reached through good planning. Taking into account the factors we have mentioned here should help you to determine the proper flagpole for your location and preferences, or at least give you an idea of which flagpoles you should consider.

7. Your Flagpole Budget

Finally, everyone's favorite part is their budget allotted for selecting a new flagpole. This is going to be different for everyone and when it comes to picking your new flagpole, there is no right or wrong answer, only what works for you. As long as you take into consideration everything discussed prior, location, composition, height, wind speed, and the different kinds of flagpoles, features, and their finishes, you should have a good idea of what you need for your home or business.

The price of flagpoles is usually going to be higher for commercial grade flagpoles and also go up as the height, wind speed rating and interior wall thickness goes up as well. Internal halyard systems cost more than external systems as they have more moving parts and materials but they also offer more security and you won't need to replace the halyard as often.

Whatever you are looking for, we hope you find it and we hope you find it within your budget.

It should be noted: That while most of our flagpoles can be installed without expert or professional assistance, some cases may require some additional help. You will need to do a lot of recon when considering the installation of a new flagpole. You will need to see if there are any laws or ordinances regarding the height of your flagpoles or flagpoles in general. You will need to scout out an appropriate location, free from any obstructions above and below ground and you will need to make sure your new flagpole can handle the weather in your area.

FAQ for Flag Poles

Shipping Information

You can click on the following link to see our Shipping Policies and General Information on the subject.

What is the standard height of a flagpole? What size flag pole for my house?

The standard height for a flagpole is typically around 20ft. Most houses that are only one story in height, will utilize a flagpole that is 20 to 25ft tall.

How deep should the flagpole be?

To be installed properly a flagpole needs to have at least ten percent of its height in the ground. This comes out to 2ft of a 20ft flagpole that will need to be in the ground for proper installation.

Where to buy a flagpole?

Right here at the United States Flag Store. We carry flagpoles of all kinds, varieties, and from a number of different vendors and manufacturers. Browse through our vast selection of Flagpoles and find yours today.