Know The Difference Between Algae Moss Mildew And Mold
You cant properly that the problem unless you can accurately identify it. All three organisms pose their own set of complications.
- Algae grows naturally and is normally harmless, but excessive growth in the right conditions causes property damage. Its distinguished by its green or black-green color that resembles a surface stain. Algae is slick and slimy to the touch.
- Moss is a normally benign organism that grows naturally in many areas. Its obvious by its fuzzy bright green color.
- Mildew isnt a healthy organism. Its powdery residue spreads quickly in warm wet climates. Its color varies but is normally light gray-green.
Mold, unlike the other organisms, isnt a healthy occurrence. Its unattractive and often smells rancid.
Mold usually grows on moist wood or drywall and is identified by the dark splotches it leaves on the materials surface.
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What Are The Dark Streaks On My Roof
You may have noticed dark streaks across your roof. Given that moss grows upright on surfaces, and algae stays low and flush to the surfaces it grows on, its likely any dark streaks you see are algae.
Algae staining on roofs all start out being spread by wind, birds, and varmints, affecting homes across much of the United States.
This algae normally begins its lifecycle as airborne spores that will settle on your roof, especially those roofs that have asphalt shingles. The northern exposure of roofs has the most chance for algae to survive/thrive because that part of the roof is exposed to the least UV and dries last after morning dew and rain.
As the algae grows and spreads, it begins to look like large black streaks on your shingles.
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How An Black Roof Stains Be Removed From Shingles
The good news is: Yes, Roof Stain removal is possible! Choose between two common roof cleaning solutions used to :do it yourself roof cleaning using a roof cleaning product, or using roof cleaning services from a professional roof cleaning business.
The difference between the roof cleaning company and DIY roof cleaning is cost, and results.
Hire a Roof Cleaning Business
A roof cleaning business has experience at the shingle cleaning techniques and appropriate pressure to use with roof wash products. Pro roof cleaners years of experience will typically result in more complete removal of roof stains.
Do It Yourself Roof Stain Removal
Search for Roof Cleaning Products to find roof cleaner suppliers who offer roof cleaning chemicals, but be careful to know the company and what products they offer. Trust roof cleaner supply companies that offer multiple formulas, and preventive solutions as well. Over the years we have found Roof Cleaner QSE and Roof Shingle Cleaner OX to be quality products with thousands of customers every year.
When you clean your own roof shingles be prepared to set aside an afternoon, and get your ladder out. There is no magic bullet when it comes to Roof Cleaning, and you will at least need a ladder to get up to the level of the gutter. The closer you are to the roof stains, the better your Roof Stain Removal Products will work.
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Prolonged Illnesses Can Be A Sign Of Mold On Roof
There are lots of different kinds of mold although only a relative few are considered toxic. Despite that, even non-toxic mold can still cause significant health problems.
Mold infestations have been found responsible for respiratory issues including infections, excessive runny nose and eyes, worsening of asthma, and even skin rashes.
Lilly Miller Moss Out For Roofs And Structures6lb
- Free returns are available for the shipping address you chose. You can return the item for any reason in new and unused condition: no shipping charges
- by entering your model number.
- Can be applied directly or mixed with water and used as a spray
- For roof application
- Covers up to 6000 square feet
- 6 lbs. covers up to 6,000 sq. ft
- Micro-Granule Formula, Kills Moss Quickly
- On Roofs, Patios, Sidewalks, Brick, and Unpainted Cement
- Use Dry or Wet, Non-staining, Non-corrosive to galvanized gutters
- Contains 99% Zinc Sulfate Monohydrate
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How Does One Determine If The Roof Should Come Off To Remove Attic Mold Contamination
Toxic attic mold: The photo at the left was identified as a toxic mold that probably should be removed, although the ease of movement
Generally, tearing off a roof and roof sheathing and perhaps roof framing, to remove mold would not be sensible nor cost-justified.
Mold growth, provided it is not just cosmetic mold which can simply be left alone, can be cleaned from wood surfaces by blasting, scrubbing, or even simple surface wiping, depending on the surface accessibility and smoothness.
Lots of protruding nails through a roof deck preclude wiping or scrubbing the roof decking surface and media blasting might be appropriate in some situations.
Watch out: do not launch a costly attic or under-roof mold cleanup job for harmless or cosmetic mold growths. See ATTIC MOLD, HARMLESS COSMETIC? for details.
Why Do Algae And Moss Grow On Asphalt Shingles
The wind and small animals will carry algae spores, and its one of the reasons why you may see algae-covered roofs clustered in a single neighborhood. Moss, on the other hand, likes moist, shady environments and often grows on the north-facing side of trees. Overhanging tree branches and debris left to accumulate on a roof is why you may find clumps of this green stuff gathering on asphalt shingles.
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How To Get Rid Of Algae On The Roof
You could replace all the roofing with new shingles dark enough to disguise the staining, or with shingles laced with copper granules, which are lethal to algae. But that would only make sense if the shingles were worn out.
The less expensive solution is to spray wash the roof with a 50 percent mix of water and bleach to get rid of the algae. Just be sure to wet your foundation plantings first, and rinse everything in clean water when youre done. Plants dont like bleach, and wetting them with plain water first protects them.
What If I Like The Moss
Some homeowners find moss enchanting, like ivy growing up the side of their home. If youd like to grow moss or other plants on your roof, you could consider investing in a residential green roof. Thin, extensive green roofs are enough to grow succulents and mosses. If youre interested in taller plants, consider an intensive green roof.
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How Can Homeowners Discourage Algae And Moss From Growing On The Roof
Trees overhanging the roof can encourage algae and moss growth. So trim back any overhanging branches. Twigs, leaves, and sticks that accumulate on the roof should be promptly removed with a leaf blower. Always direct the airflow down the slope of the roof, so debris doesnt get stuck under the shingles.
Keep the gutters clean and clear. If a higher roof is draining onto a lower roof, thats a recipe for algae and moss growth. A simple fix is to direct the downspout of the upper roof into the lower roof gutter.
If youre due for a roof replacement, then installing algae-resistant shingles is an excellent way to prevent unsightly algae growth. Algae hate copper, and you can also put strips of copper under the shingles nearest the roof peak. This will prevent future algae cells from making your roof their home. You can also replace your old asphalt shingles with new ones in a darker color to hide streaks and stains.
So When Is A Roof Tear Off Necessary If I’ve Got A Moldy Attic Or Cathedral Ceiling
When the roof sheathing is rotted or damaged, or when other structural repairs are needed, a tear-off is unavoidable.
When attic surfaces or insulation contain a large reservoir of toxic or allergenic mold, AND if the area were inaccessible, say because thespace is too small to enter, then it may be necessary to remove some portion of roofing to give access for remediation, particularly if there is evidenceof transmission of problem mold from that space into the living area.
This article is part of our series: MOLD in BUILDINGS which describes how to find mold and test for mold in buildings, including how and where to collect mold samples using adhesive tape – an easy,inexpensive, low-tech but very effective mold testing method.
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Are Those Black Stains On The Roof Mold Or Algae
Mold, algae, and moss are very different organisms. Each requires a different method of safe removal and prevention to keep your roof healthy and looking good. Black stains or streaks on the roof will appear anywhere in the U.S., where its hot and humid. In Florida, roof discoloration is a common problem. Most people will refer to these stains as mold, but algae actually cause them.
Whats the difference between mold and algae seen on a roof? Mold is a fungus that eats a variety of nutrients to grow and thrive. In contrast, algae is technically a plant organism that requires all the things other plants need to grownamely, sunlight and moisture. Mold wont form on a roof because its allergic to sunlight, and as soon as the ambient temperature surrounding the mold becomes dry, the mold dies.
Moss, those green, feathery clumps you may see forming on the roof, is a different type of plant and isnt the same thing as algae or mold. Algae is a single-celled organism, while moss is not. Moss also looks like a plant with its tiny stems and leaves. Algae do not have plant-like characteristics. Instead, it spreads out as a clump of single cells and will be slimy to the touch.
How To Clean Your Roof
There are several ways to clean your roof from moss, algae and mold. Use these tips as your guide when cleaning your roof.
Some homeowners are considering roof waterproofing in order to prevent moisture and mold growth. While its good to initiate for your roofs maintenance, getting help from an exceptional roofing company is still your best option.
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Why Algae Grows On Roofs
The black streaks, a form of algae known as gloeocapsa magma or roof mold, only appear in the most humid areas of the country. Therefore, its normal for the streaks to appear on the roofs north side. This side of the roof receives the least amount of sun and stays damp the longest.
The bacteria accumulated over time feed on limestone filler and moisture. The algae spores grow and darken, creating the dark streaks visible on roofs. These airborne spores can be carried from roof to roof and infest an entire neighborhood if left untreated.
Not only do the elements and creatures carry the bacteria particles from place to place, the particles foster the growth of other roof inhabitants. The black stains harbor a number of molds or fungi which require warm, humid environments. The fungi lack chlorophyll, giving the them the name of heterotrophs. They feed on organic matter since they cannot manufacture food from raw materials.
On the northern side of an asphalt roof gathers the most moisture, which raises the humidity and provides an abundance of organic nutrients for the fungi to feed off of. Another factor in supplying food sources to the fungi is the tar used in roofing. The substance is ultimately fossilized, dead organic matter.
However, the granule base of asphalt is consumed first along with the tar. The dislodged bases accelerate deterioration of the roof because it cannot prevent the effects of excessive heat or extreme weather.
Black Streaks On Roof
The first thing to note is that what youre seeing is the result of a cyanobacteria known as gloeocapsa magna. Its also known as blue-green algae in the roofing business. Though gloeocapsa magna has literally been around for centuries, it didnt make its ugly presence known as a major problem in the U.S. until the postwar building boom of the 1950s. Since the 1990s, gloeocapsa magna has spread to just about every corner of the United States.
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Guide For Algae & Moss Removal On Your Roof
If you live in the South, Midwest, or another region of the country that has warm, humid summers, you may have noticed stains and streaks showing up on your asphalt shingles. These stains look a lot like moldbut in fact, much of this so-called mold is actually blue-green algae . In some cases, what looks like mold might be more properly classified as moss.
In less frequent instances, the streaks on the roof actually are mold, which can be very dangerous for your family and more difficult to get rid of. The most serious mold cases can cause asthma, headaches, and other health problems, so its crucial to understand the difference.
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How Do You Get Rid Of Black Mold On Roof Shingles
Cleaning the Roof Yourself
People also ask, how do you remove black mold from roof shingles?
The less expensive solution is to spray wash the roof with a 50 percent mix of water and bleach to get rid of the algae. Just be sure to wet your foundation plantings first, and rinse everything in clean water when you’re done.
One may also ask, will bleach damage asphalt shingles? Chlorine bleach / TSP chemical combination can kill plants, and the phosphates hurt the environment. Chlorine bleach also dries out a shingle roof causing curling, and ultimately shortening asphalt roof shingles life. Roof Cleaner QSE does NOT CONTAIN bleach or chlorine chemicals.
Furthermore, how do I remove black stains from my roof?
Simply mix up a solution of two parts water to one part bleach in a garden sprayer. Spray down the affected areas of your roof with this solution, let the solution soak for about ten minutes, and then spray the cleaning solution off your roof with a garden hose.
What is the best cleaner for roof shingles?
The most effective method of cleaning algae and moss from a roof is with a 50:50 mix of laundry strength liquid chlorine bleach and water. Apply with a sprayer and allow the solution to dwell on the roof surface for 15 to 20 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly with low pressure water.
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Whats The Difference Between Mold Mildew And Algae
While many homeowners believe that black roof stains come from mold, mildew or even soot, its actually caused by an algae. There are a few important differences between algae, mold and mildew.
The good news is that algae is less harmful than mold and mildew, making it more of an aesthetic problem than a health concern. The bad news is that sometimes homeowners struggle to tell the difference between mold, mildew and algae.
Choose The Right Day And Prepare The Area
Check the weather forecast and choose a cool or overcast day with little to no wind so the spray hits your shingles, not the neighbors. Those conditions allow the cleaning solution to soak deep into the algae colonies without evaporating too quickly.
Next, repair any loose shingles or flashings, and clean the gutters and downspouts so they can drain freely.
Then prepare the area by moving lawn furniture and covering vegetation, because youre going to have overspray. Even though the product we chose isnt toxic, the runoff can be pretty ugly. So a little prep work will save you cleanup time later.
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How To Use Bleach To Clean Other Types Of Roofs
Some types of bleach for instance oxygen bleach, can be used to clean other types of roofs. It is environment friendly and it does not damage the color of the roof on wooden roof shingle shakes. This procedure requires the bleach and water
How To Clean Algae Or Mold Off Your Roof Shingles
Living in a humid area of the country like Florida, youve probably seen your asphalt shingle roofs with unsightly dark streaks on them. A blue-green algae known as Gloeocapsa Magma could be the reason you have the algae which is spread by airborne spores. Sometimes it can also be caused by an accumulation of mildew, mold, dirt, or defective shingles.
This discoloring can hurt the beauty of your homes curb appeal and the resale value of your home if you have it up for sale.
Algae stains dont show up below the metal flashing around chimneys or roof vents because the copper and the zinc coating on galvanized sheet metal are toxic to algae. Whenever it rains, trace amounts of metals are washed down the roof, inhibiting algae growth.
Algae Resistant Shingles
In recent years, roofing manufacturers have begun mixing copper granules into roofing products to produce algae resistant shingles. If you live in an area susceptible to algae growth, be sure to specify this type of shingle when replacing your roof, reports Todays Homeowner.
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