It goes without saying that dirt and grime are bound to build up on your roof over time. Even growth of moss and algae is a possibility if you do not take the time to check on your roof regularly. Aside from the obvious downside of reducing your roof’s curb appeal, these contaminants can cause damage or eat into the expected lifespan of your roof if not dealt with appropriately. Luckily, roof cleaning is an easy and inexpensive project that can be done by even the most inexperienced of homeowners without the help New Albany roofing companies. Here we discuss the common levels off dirt on roofs as well as the best methods to use when dealing with the various problems.
1. Moss, Algae, and Other Roof Stains
Although they are unsightly, moss and algae cause more harm than simply interfering with the outward appearance of your home. These little plants will slowly eat away at the base of shingles, stripping your roof of its protective layer, thereby exposing your home to all manner of problems including leaks and water damage. This is why you should take action the instant you notice moss and algae on your roof. There are few options when it comes to dealing with a moss or algae-ridden roof.
The roofing market is filled with plenty of chemical-free cleaning products specially designed to remove everything from moss, to fungi, to ugly black algae stains. These cleaners are available for all manner of roofing materials, so you should be able to find a product for your particular roof and the kind of problem you are dealing with. The great thing about using ready-made cleaning products is that they come with clear user instructions that leave very little margin for guesswork or error when you are cleaning your roof. This cleaning method; however, costs more than the other options due to the high cost of store-bought cleaning products.
Moss, algae, and other roof growths cannot survive in environments where the PH level is below 4 or above 7. This is where the chlorine bleach cleaning method comes in. Bleach not only rids the roof of hideous stains but also addresses the underlying cause of the problem by creating a difficult environment for algae and moss to breed.
For this method, you will need to create a mixture of 1-quart bleach, 1-gallon water, and ¼-cup ammonia free heavy-duty household cleaner or trisodium phosphate (TSP). Pour the mixture into a pump type garden sprayer and spray the solution over the roof one section at a time until there is runoff. Give the solution 15 minutes to dry and check if staining is gone. If staining is still present, re-apply solution as many times as is needed. Rinse the roof with clean water when everything is clean.
Due to the corrosive nature of chlorine bleach, there are a few precautionary measures you should take when using this cleaning method. First off, test the solution on a small section of the roof to ensure it does not cause corrosion. If the solution is safe to use, remove all lawn furniture and cover any available vegetation to protect it from the overspray of the cleaning solution.
Other safety measures to take include wearing non-slip shoes and starting at the bottom row working up to the roof’s peak when cleaning. This helps reduce risk of slipping. Also, schedule the cleaning on a cool cloudy day. This will prevent whatever cleaning product you are using from evaporating too quickly before soaking deep into algae or moss colonies. Lastly, clean gutters and downspouts to ensure proper drainage of cleaning solution and water rinse off.
2. Roof Debris
When there is a large tree next to your house, leaves, pine needles, sticks, and branches are likely to collect on the roof. If not removed promptly leaf buildup can block downspout systems while tree limbs can puncture the roof causing serious damage. The good news is that clearing the roof of debris is very easy and can be done in 3 simple steps.
Alternatively, you can rid the roof of debris through power washing. This cleaning method can remove even the toughest of stains from your roof. The only problem is that it can loosen shingles and cause damage to other roofing material. So, it is best to leave power washing to professional roofing companies. It takes quite a bit of experience to power wash a roof safely without causing damage.
3. Cleaning of Clogged Gutters
As easy to clean as roof debris, clogged gutters only require you to remove gutter covering, scoop out leaves & other matter, and flush down water to check for proper flow. Have a gutter bag or bucket nearby to toss all the dirt you pick out. Make sure to also remove debris that may be lodged in downspouts.
When to Call a Professional
While most of the dirt and stains found on roof can be cleaned in a DIY project, there are times that demand you get help from roofing experts. One of those instances is when your roof remains dirty or stained even after trying the eco-friendly and chlorine bleach cleaning methods. Gutters that remain clogged even after thorough cleaning also call for the expertise of a professional. Lastly, give the professionals a call if moss and algae are a recurring problem on your roof. New Albany roofing companies can apply more effective measures like the installation of zinc (or copper) strips or the application a coating of stain-blocking solution.