Help and General Information Flagpole Selection

General Information and Guide For In Ground Residential Flagpoles

The variety of in ground residential flagpoles available today can be a little overwhelming when trying to decide what to purchase. We have accumulated this list of features and recommendations to assist you in making an informed decision and give you many years of enjoyment. Take your time and review all our information and recommendations for a hassle-free experience with your flagpole.

Flagpole Construction

  • Steel not many in ground poles offer for residential with steel construction. Check wall thickness and wind speed rating on those you find.

  • Aluminum is the most common material used in production of in ground residential flagpoles. Check wall thickness - gage and wind speed rating on those you find.

  • Fiberglass is for residential use is limited and those I could find about twice the price of aluminum.

  • One Piece in ground poles are generally a tapered pole and mostly what I have found fiberglass because it is light weight.

  • Sectional aluminum poles with external halyard are the most common residential poles and the least expensive. Pay close attention to the gage of the aluminum and remember the smaller the number the thicker the wall is and look at base-butt diameter. My experience has been those constructed of 16 gage aluminum do not hold up well over time in high wind areas. One day this last year in our area we have a severe wind storm and the next morning the first four customers I had came in looking to purchase replacement sections for poles that bent at a 90 degree angle. If you are going to buy a sectional pole look for something constructed with 10 to 13 gage aluminum.

  • Telescoping aluminum flagpoles are the top seller for residential applications and offer many advantages over all others. The biggest advantage I see for high wind areas is the ability to lower these poles one section there by strengthening the lowest section and reducing the stress on the pole. This also allows you to drop the top of the pole out of the higher velocity wind. Most of these pole are configure with with anti-furlough rings and snap clips to attach your flag and come configured to fly two flags. Depending on the height of the pole they will have 3 to 5 sections that collapse into each other and taper to the top. You will see them offered with twist lock or push buttons to secure each section. This configuration completely eliminates the halyard and the truck at the top and is lower maintenance based upon that.

    The biggest disadvantage I found to these poles is as you are raising the sections the weight increases of the amount you are lifting, and for us older folks that can become difficult. Of course the taller the pole, the more sections and the heavier the lift becomes. But there are conversion kits offer where you can convert the telescoping pole to a telescoping pole with a halyard and truck.

    Maintenance is a minimum with the telescoping poles, however I did find in our dry dusty Arizona climate you will need to clean the fine particles of dust from the pole and seals a couple of times a year. This is easily done using a mix of dish soap and water and rag. Soak you rag in the soapy water and then hold it around the pole as you lower the sections, repeat a couple of times. Never use any oil based products on your pole trying to lubricate it if it becomes difficult to raise and lower. This will only attract and trap the fine particles of dust and dirt causing more issues.

  • Halyard is sold in diameters ranging from 3/16 to 3/8 and can be purchased by the foot. When purchasing double the height of your pole for example 16 foot pole should purchase at least 32 feet. Securing the two ends together will use some rope, you will also use some on each snap hook for securing your flag. And finally you need a certain amount to wrap around your cleat to secure the halyard. A polyester braided material is recommended and you can even purchase wire filled halyard for extra strength and durability.

  • Base Diameter or butt of your pole will also affect the strength and durability of the pole. You will see the taller the pole, the large the diameter. You will find residential poles offer from 2 inches diameter up to 3 1/2 inches in diameter.

  • Gage - Wall Thickness of the material use to construct your pole is a key element in determining its strength and durability. When the wall thickness is expressed in "gage" remember small numbers are better. A 10 gage vs 18 gage is a thicker wall pole, and much greater strength. I always like to compare the taking of an aluminum can, crushing it in the center and then flexing it back and forth until you can easily tear it into two pieces. If you watch a flagpole in the wind you will see it bend from one direction to another and some of the "light duty" poles and flex a foot or more in each direction. This places a great deal of stress at the base of the pole and over time will cause it to bend and perhaps even break in half, much like our pop can. The thicker the wall of the aluminum and the greater the diameter of the pole itself are the two major factors that will effect the lifespan of your pole.

    In high wind areas try and find poles that are at least 13 gage and 2.75 inches to 3.25 inches in diameter at the base. These will be a little more expensive but the durability and lifespan of those poles will pay you back in the long run.

  • Flagpole Height

    You will find in ground residential flagpoles offer in heights ranging from 15 feet up 40 feet. The typical height for residential flagpole applications is 20 feet, but if your home is two to three stories, you may want to consider a 25 or 30 foot flagpole. Always remember the higher you go the greater the wind speed and the more stress your pole must endure.


  • Steel poles are generally solid steel and can be paint or powder coated in variety of colors and finishes.
  • Aluminum poles are generally offered in satin finish, clear anodized, bronze anodized, and black anodized.
  • Fiberglass poles have a glossy gel coat offered in white, bronze, and black color finish.
  • Installation

    The most common method in installation and our recommendation is the utilization of a sleave set in concrete with proper drainage. By utilizing the ground sleave method you always have the option to remove the pole from the sleave for repairs or to store it if your location is a season residence. This is another feature I like about the telescoping poles, they collapse down to a very compact size, for easier management and storage. Sectional poles must first be removed from the sleave as one unit and then you can break them down into the sectional pieces. Tip: Always remove the flags from the pole before attempting to install or remove it from the sleave; it was a lesson hard learned but remembered and never repeated.

    Location Selection

    Pick a location for your pole that once it is installed and the flag is flying it will not be hitting power lines, lights, gutters & tree limbs. Line of sight is yet another consideration on your property. Also if you plan on having the typical top mounted light try and pick a location where neither you nor your neighbors will be bother by the light shinning into a home.

    Wind Speed

    The map shows the maximum steady wind expected at an elevation of thirty feet above ground level within a fifty-year period of recurrence. Areas with the same maximum constant or steady wind speed are indicated. Complied from National Association of Architectural Metal Manufacturers' Guide Specifications for the Design of Metal Flagpoles, NAAMM Standard FP-1-90

    United States Wind Chart

    Last Update 3-16-2023