Surface Medic, LLC

How to Keep Your Roof Clean

How to Keep Your Roof Clean

Keeping your roof clean can not only prevent unsightly black streaks but also protect the structure. Dirty roofs are more susceptible to mold, mildew, and moss growth which can eat away at the shingles.

Using the wrong water pressure can damage or strip the granules off of shingles and may even void your warranty. Soft washing uses low-pressure water and detergents to remove debris, and it’s safe for all roofing materials. This is a fantastic article to read.

Debris Removal

If your roof is accumulating debris, this needs to be removed promptly to avoid damage like leaky roofs or degraded shingles. Debris can also lead to the growth of algae, which can cause black stains on your roof that gradually eat away at the material.

Cleaning your roof regularly removes debris such as twigs, pine needles, leaves, and moss. It also eliminates the risk of clogged gutters that redirect rain and cause water leaks in interior walls.

Roof cleaning is the process of directing high-pressure water at dirt, mildew, mold, lichen, moss, and other unwanted materials. This method is highly effective and nontoxic, but it’s important to hire a professional who understands the different roofing materials. It’s also crucial to pick a day with clear skies, minimal wind, and relatively moderate temperatures. This will reduce the risk of injury to workers and damage to equipment. It will also allow debris to fall safely onto a collection area and not be scattered around the property.

Algae Removal

Unlike dirt, debris, and moss, which can damage shingles and reduce the life of your roof, algae and fungus only affect the appearance of your home. These growths develop dark streaks on your roof and hide the original color of your shingle. The best way to remove these unsightly stains is to use a 50 percent mixture of water and household bleach in a sprayer. Avoid using a pressure washer, as this can damage the shingles and shorten their lifespan. Before you start spraying, wet down any foundation plantings to protect them from the bleach run-off.

For those who are against the use of straight household bleach, oxygen bleach is available in liquid or powder form. This alternative oxidizer uses hydrogen peroxide instead of sodium hypochlorite and eliminates foreign organisms on your roof without taking the color out of shingles. It is also safe for plants. This method works especially well for removing moss from roofs.

Black Streak Removal

Those dark spots or ugly black streaks on a roof may look like dirt, mildew, or soot, but are usually caused by the fungus/algae gloeocapsa magma. This specific type of algae forms when spores group and grow as it photolyzes water, producing oxygen. As it grows, it creates a darkly pigmented protective coating that is pulled down by gravity and stains the roof shingles.

If left unchecked, this can lead to shingles cracking and crumbling. It can also reduce the shingles’ ability to protect the attic and home from UV rays, resulting in higher electric bills.

While it is possible for a homeowner to use a homemade cleaning formula (such as chlorine bleach, trisodium phosphate, or lye) to remove black stains from a roof, doing so can damage the shingles. It’s always recommended to contact a professional to clean the roof and prevent damage to the shingles.

Prevent Leaks

When a roof is dirty, water builds up. When a leak occurs, it can damage the interior of the home, causing musty odors and even early mold development. If the water is left untreated, it can lead to further damage to your home and a higher insurance premium.

Leaks can be difficult to find, especially if they occur in an attic or crawl space. Having an experienced contractor help you track them down can save you money and stress.

A common cleaning technique uses high-pressure washing. This method blasts algae, mildew, moss, dirt, and other debris from the surface of the roof. It’s effective, but it can also damage shingles and cause oxidation on metal roofs. It can also void your roof warranty. Check this helpful information.