How To Prevent Moss On Your New Roof
A long-term solution can be ensuring no parts of the roof are in shade. Trim any branches you suspect are making shade and ensure the roof gets as much direct sunlight as possible. Make sure to keep the roof and the gutters free from leaves and debris, as they can be moisture collectors.
Metal strips on the ridge of the roof are the best long-term solution for moss on the roof. A copper, zinc or galvanized metal strip can make the roof unsuitable for moss, algae, and lichen to grow. Metal will oxidize over time. Because the strips are placed on the ridge of the roof, every time it rains the strips will be washed down the whole roof, making it much less habitable for moss, algae, and lichen. Thats why you sometimes see a gap in the moss next to an aluminum-sided dormer. Beware that adding a copper strip will take time for the inhibition of moss to start. Metal strips cant deal with a present infestation of moss, they can only prevent them from happening.If you need help with cleaning your roof from moss or are planning on redoing your roof, contact us for a free estimate or just a consultation!
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Why Is Moss Bad For Shingles
You may feel that a bit of moss gives your roof some charm, just as ivy growing up the side of your house might. While moss may be beautiful, it is a detriment to your roof. Heres why:
Most plants gather water from their roots, but mosses gather water from their leaves. Therefore, they do not mind that shingles, unlike soil, are a dry and relatively nutrient-free environment. They will grow roots directly into the shingles, which can destroy the shingles and create the opportunity for leaks.
When it rains, moss will soak up water and retain it, creating consistently wet conditions on your roof. Moss growth will also interfere with proper drainage of water off the roof as water needs to trickle through or around the moss instead of running straight down to the gutters. The resulting constant exposure to water can degrade shingles.
Over time, moss can also work its way under shingles, lifting them up. This uplift creates opportunities for water to penetrate lower layers of the roof and, potentially, your home.
While minor moss infections may not cause many issues, it is likely to become severe over time. Once you spot moss growth on your roof, you should take steps to resolve it. If you have a severe infection, you may have no choice but to remove the shingles that have been damaged by it. A professional roofer can help you assess what kind of intervention your roof needs.
Never Pressure Wash Your Roof
This is something VERY IMPORTANT to take note of! Never ever pressure wash your roof, because pressure washing is designed for surfaces that can withstand high impact, but the material that roof shingles are made out of are delicate and only can absorb so much pressure!
Pressure washing can cause heavy damage by removing roof shingles from the roofs surface and further exposing it to the elements that will create more opportunities for moss to grow and spread. Dont create more problems than you started with!
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Apply A Cleaning Solution
For more widespread and pesky moss problems, you can use a cleaning solution. There are tons of moss and algae cleaners out there. You can find them in any home improvement store or online retailer.
- 8 oz. dish soap to 2 gallons of water
- 2 cups of bleach to 2 gallons of water
- 2 cups of white distilled vinegar to 2 gallons of water
Once you get your moss removal solution, simply apply it to the area once youve rinsed and brushed the moss. Its best to apply moss cleaners on a cloudy day. You dont want the solution to evaporate before it gets a chance to work!
While these store-bought and DIY solutions are effective for some moss problems, theres nothing better than commercial cleaners. For that, youll have to hire a roofing professional to remove the moss from your roof.
Why Shouldnt I Add A New Roof Over Moss
When you need a new roof, it may be tempting to add a second layer of shingles over your existing shingles. Doubling up your shingles can save time and expense on your roof replacement as your roofer doesnt need to remove and dispose of the old shingles. This strategy is convenient for homeowners because the replacement wont take as long or make as much of a mess. However, there are some circumstances where merely adding a new layer of shingles isnt a good idea.
For example, when you have significant moss growth on your roof, simply covering it up with new shingles isnt wise. Several potential problems may occur if your roofer simply adds a new roof over your existing, moss-covered roof. These potential problems include:
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Understand Roof Moss And Damage
Cracks and crevices between roof shingles provide ideal spots for moss to grow and spread. These simple plants flourish wherever moisture collects, particularly on north-facing or tree-shaded roofs. Moss doesn’t need much light or nutrition, but moisture is crucial. In humid areas prone to foggy mornings and moderate winters, a slight dusting of moss can escalate to a serious roof problem.
Left unchecked, roof moss grows into a thick, resilient layer. Established moss acts like a sponge, soaking in moisture from below and above, and keeping your roof constantly moist. Moss creeps under shingle edges as it spreads, prying shingles loose and letting damaging moisture reach the layers below. Damage progresses from shingles to rotten underlayments and damaged framework. Health-threatening mold can develop and travel down walls to affect living areas as well.
Untreated moss gains a foothold in crevices and cracks as it spreads.
Never Add A New Roof Over Moss
Even though doubling up your shingles can save expenses and time during roof replacement, covering a moss infected shingle with new shingles will only lead to problems. Potential problems include:
- Bumps in the roof as moss grows
- Unsafe conditions for the roofers
- Secondary moss infections
- Voidance of the limited warranty
Removing moss infection on time and before installing a new roof is the best way to go. You should also remove sources of shade, go for algae-resistant shingles and install a metal strip so as to prevent moss growth in the future. Regular roof inspections are also a must. For FREE INSPECTION call 387-3000 Roofing Experts DAngelo and Sons. Contractors you can trust to repair your roofing repair.
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Treat And Protect Against Roof Moss
The best time to treat roof moss is when it’s actively growing. Moss grows very little in summer, but it kicks into high gear during fall rains, moderate winters and early spring months. Treating right before peak fall rains is perfect timing for roof moss treatments. You’ll get the best results if moss is damp, but no rain is forecast for a few days.
If possible, remove excess moss with a rake or broom first. The upper layers of thick moss protect the bottom layer against moss killers. For pitched roofs that you can safely walk, sprinkle dry formulas along the roof ridge. Rains will wash the product down and cover the lower areas for you. For flat roofs or roofs that aren’t safe to walk on, use a liquid formula and a pump-style sprayer to cover all the roof surfaces easily.
As moss dies, rains will wash dead moss away. You can speed the process with a broom or rake, too. To be proactive in moss control, treat your roof right before the rainy season each year. Always keep roofs and gutter free from leaves and other debris that can hold moisture in and promote moss growth.
Keeping roofs free from moss helps avoid costly home repairs.
By taking action to kill existing roof moss and prevent its return, you can protect your family and your investment in your home. CORRY’S Moss B Ware and Lilly Miller Moss Out! products help you take control of roof moss, enhance your home’s appeal and put an end to roof moss damage and costly repairs.
Homemade Moss Killer For Roofs
While moss is typically not harmful, it could cause minor damage to a roof. Moss retains moisture, which could pose a problem for wood shingles, where rotting and decay could occur. However, you can quickly fix the issue with this homemade moss killer for roofs.
Moss Killer for Roofs Recipe
- ½ cup oxygen bleach
- 4 gallons of warm water
Mix the bleach with the water in a large bucket. If you need to get rid of moss on your roof, the hardest part is the labor required.
Get a stiff-bristle scrub brush and attach it to the end of a poleif you dont have a random pole hanging around, a broom will work as well. Carefully get up to your roof and brush downward to knock the moss loose. It is best to do this on a calm, overcast day.
Grab your oxygen bleach solution and apply it to all sections of moss growth. Continue layering the solution as needed to keep the moss damp for 20 minutes. Using your brush, scrub the moss off of your roof, working from top to bottom.
Rinse your roof with cold water. We love this recipe because you can add a little bit of liquid dish soap to it and use it as a DIY deck cleaner as well.
If these homemade moss killer options dont help you control moss in your yard, then a soil test might be necessary to get to the root of the problem. Otherwise, these recipes and techniques are a great way to get your property picture-perfect.
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Recipe For Homemade Roof Moss Killer
Homemade moss killers are effective but cannot match the results a chemical-based moss killer offers. However, if youre trying to buy some time before calling the experts, below are some common homemade roof moss killer recipes.
- 3 cups of chlorine bleach + 2 gallons of water
- 2 gallons of water + 8 ounces of dawn Ultra Dish soap
- 3 cups distilled vinegar + 2 gallons of water
- 1 pound of powdered oxygen bleach + 2 gallons of water
For enhanced results, consider wetting your roof with plain water before applying your homemade roof moss killer. Allow the roof to stay wet for 20 to 40 minutes before applying the DIY moss removal solution.
How You Shouldn’t Remove Moss From Roofs
While there is a right way to remove moss from the roof, there are also wrong ways to go about it.
A common misconception about how to get moss off a roof is that people tend to consider is using a pressure washer. A pressure washer tends to put too much pressure on roofs, which can damage your shingles. Most people aren’t properly trained to use them, which might cause more harm than good.
Scraping is also not something you should consider when trying to figure out how to get rid of moss on the roof, as it can also cause damage to the shingles. Since moss can deeply attach itself to your shingles, you might end up lifting shingles too much and causing cracks in them.
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Why Is There Growth On My Roof
Moss and other plant or fungus growth is a very common problem for roofs, even in parts of the country that dont see much rain. Moist, shady places are the ideal spot for moss, lichen, and algae to grow. Typically, this will be a North facing part of your roof that doesnt get much sun. Spores can be spread by wind, birds, and bugs, and when conditions are ripe they will bloom.
Newer asphalt, fiberglass, or slate shingles may have a moss resistant chemical coating on them, but older shingle roofs are commonly invaded by moss or other growth. Even if you know how to clean your shingles regularly, moss can be found hidden in the crevices between them.
When moss is growing on a metal roof, theres a good chance the protective coating on your metal shingles has worn off. Because moss usually grows in areas untouched by the sun, it can retain water and stay damp, which can lead to rust or corrosion.
When youre removing large patches of moss from a metal roof, the best bet is to repaint your roof. A professional roofer has the experience to remove moss and repaint your roof safely, and they are much better at spotting signs of wood rot or leaks under your roof. It can take practice to learn how to find a roof leak and its best to consult a professional before attempting any patchwork on your own.
So how do you get rid of it?
How To Remove Moss From An Asphalt Roof
Q: We have a green roof that is not meant to be green. Moss is collecting on one side of the asphalt roof. The roof is otherwise in good shape. What I have learned so far is that the roof should not be power-washed. How should one remove the growth, and who does this type of work? I am not interested in getting on the roof myself.
A: The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association distinguishes between moss, a plant with leaves that can grow into thick clumps, and mold and mildew, which are common names for types of algae that simply discolor the surface. Algae creates ugly black or brown streaks but doesnt damage a roof. Moss which is what shows in the pictures you sent is more worrisome because it can damage asphalt shingles. A thick growth of moss works like a sponge, keeping the roofing damp for long periods, and it can lift edges of shingles, making them vulnerable to blowing off in a windstorm.
To clean either algae or moss, the association recommends putting on protective gear and protecting plants, spraying with a 50-50 mix of household bleach and water, allowing that to sit for at least 15 to 20 minutes and then rinsing with low-pressure water. The bleach will kill the algae or moss, but rinsing wont necessarily leave the roof sparkling clean. Algae will disappear and wash away with subsequent rains, the association advises. Moss will loosen over time and may be removed with a leaf blower.
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Make Your Own Bleach And Water Solution
This 50/50 combination effectively kills mossand every other plant it toucheson your roof and in your gutters. If the moss on your roof is still a thin layer, you may be able to use this solution to remove it without scrubbing. If not, though, it is still important to kill spores that have moved onto new places on your roof. For a natural mixture, substitute vinegar for bleach.
Because this solution can kill other plants and damage some housing materials, you will need to protect the ground below from run-off. You can wet plants to help protect them, or use disposable plastic drop cloths to cover the landscaping and walkways.
In addition to a vinegar-water solution, you can also use baking soda as an all-natural alternative. Mix 3 tablespoons of baking soda per one liter of water and spray it on your roof when the forecast is calling for dry, warm weather. After a few days, the moss should be dried up and can be brushed off.
Is Your Roof Going Way Too Green Use These Materials Tools And Methods To Eradicate Moss From Your Rooftopand Keep It From Coming Back
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Overhead greenery should be limited to the leaves on tree canopies. If moss is covering your roof, it’s time to get cleaning. Moss grows in areas untouched by sun, so it can develop at a speedy pace on tree-shaded and north-facing roofs. Spreading moss can quickly adhere to roof surfaces, filling in voids between shingles and tiles, and reaching under and lifting up roofing materials. This heaving of shingles allows rainwater and other moisture to seep into your roof’s structure to cause decay and rot.
Before you clean the moss off your roof, you’ll need to consider how you want to kill the plants and remove the dead layers. After cleaning, you’ll also need to put some defensive measures into play to prevent the moss from growing back.
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