Thursday, April 11, 2024
HomeHow To Remove Lichen From Asphalt Roof Shingles

How To Remove Lichen From Asphalt Roof Shingles

Roof Cleaning With A Pressure Washer

Roof Cleaning- Lichen Removal From Asphalt Shingles

Some may believe that you can clean your roof simply with a pressure washer, and while that would probably work theoretically, using a pressure washer for roof cleaning is the kiss of death for the integrity of that roof. Especially if you are trying to clean an asphalt shingle roof. The granules will start to come off and will end up in the gutters, which can and does happen normally with age, but speeding up the aging process for the roof, is not the best idea and is something we avoid.

How Lichen And Moss Damage Roofs

The growth of lichen and moss causes rapid deterioration in asphalt shingles which affects how the roof holds up to sunlight and weathering. When asphalt and fiberglass materials are exposed, the granules that protect the base of the asphalt shingles from weathering become less effective. This process of deterioration effectively shortens the lifespan of your roof. To prevent this from happening, its important to take precautionary measures.

We want to make sure that your roof is properly cared for, which is why we highly recommend using roofing service professionals who have years of experience. Conde Roofing can provide the expertise you deserve, to help make roof repair and replacement a well-thought out and hassle-free experience.

Step into the holiday season with spirit and pride knowing your roof will hold up this winter with the help of the Conde Roofing team.

You can perform annual roof maintenance yourself. But to ultimately save you time, allowing a professional to come check out your roof can help save you from the headache of an expensive repair down the road and provide the reassurance you need. That way you can focus on your family and get ready to enjoy the holidays.

Conde Roofing of NH can help alleviate your roofing concerns starting with an inspection and answering any questions you may have.

How To Prevent Moss On Roof

Happily, there are preventive measures you can use to keep your roof moss-free. First, let the sunshine in! Trim branches overhanging your roof, keep gutters free of debris, and regularly remove moisture collectors, such as leaves, branches, and seedpods, that pile up on the roof and encourage moss to grow. The best long-term solution? Attach strips of zinc or zinc-coated metal flashing strips just below a roof’s peak or ridge caps. When it rains, water flows over the metal strips leaching out moss-retardant zinc particles, which attach to roof shingles and/or tiles to stop new moss from forming.

Working safe, smart, and strategically guarantees your moss-removal operations will run smoothly. These prevention measures mean you’ll be able to stay off the ladder and roof for seasons, if not years, to come.

Read Also: Where Can I Buy Roofing Shingles

Need Lichen Removed From Your Roof Tiles

You may have seen green, black, or brown splotches across a metal or asphalt shingle roof before. In many cases, these splotches are the result of mold or moss. However, you may not know that this kind of roof damage is often caused by something called lichen.

What are lichens? A United States-based newspaper, the Columbus Dispatch, reports that lichen which can cause roof damage are the result of a particular type of algae, Gloeocapsa Magma, which is easily borne on the wind and tends to collect and grow upon roofing structures. Given that lichen is the product of a type of algae, buildings by the seaside or near large bodies of water are especially prone to lichen damage. Mornington Peninsulas proximity to Port Phillip Bay means that lichen damage to roofs in the area is quite likely.

Lichen is likely to build up on a number of different types of roof, including tin and asphalt shingle roofs. If your roof is an asphalt shingle roof, spraying to remove lichen is not the best approach to removing it power spraying or pressure cleaning can damage asphalt shingles. However, if youre struggling with lichen damage and your roof is made of a material such as tin, spraying might be the best way to deal with the problem.

In short, if you arent sure what to do about ugly and structurally-damaging lichens on your tin roof, dont wait for it to get worse contact Murrays Window & Pressure Cleaning today!

Moss Removal Products And Diy Solutions

How To: Remove Moss from the Roof

Some readymade cleaners, like Wet and Forget Liquid Mold Remover , can be mixed and applied per manufacturer’s instructions and left to kill the moss with no rinsing required. Others, like Bayer’s Advanced Moss and Algae , are available in ready-to-go sprays that hook up to your hose. Be sure to follow the mixing and application recommendations to ensure your safety and protect roof tiles, shingles, and plantings from damage.

You can also make your own moss remover for your roof. These are generally less toxic than their chemical counterparts. Chlorine bleach removes mosses, fungi, and mildew, but it may damage plants, so dilute it before spraying on your roof. A good formula? Mix 1 quart bleach with 1 gallon water and 1/4 cup heavy-duty cleaner like trisodium phosphate . Don’t use ammonia-based cleaners because they create toxic fumes when mixed with bleach.

Or, make a plant-friendlier solution of 1 cup oxygen bleach and 1 gallon of water. Home improvement expert Bob Vila says you can also mix 8 ounces of Dawn dish liquid or 1-1/2 to 3-1/2 cups of white distilled vinegar with 2 gallons of water. Pour solutions into a pump garden-style sprayer choose a backpack-type sprayer , which will be safer to use if you’re climbing and standing on a ladder.

Once you’ve decided on your moss-removing solution, it’s time to get started. Follow these step-by-step instructions to rid your roof of moss and any other debris that’s accumulated atop your house!

Recommended Reading: How Much Does It Cost To Replace A 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:

Remove Moss & Algae From Asphalt Roofing Systems

May 11, 2021

Moss and algae can both cause problems for your roofing system, but how critical is it to remove them? At Rojas Roofing, our goal is to help you extend the life of your roof and keep your home weathertight, so we want you to know when to worry about moss and algae growth and what to do when you encounter one or both on your roof.

Read Also: Does Replacing A Roof Increase Home Value

Choose A Safe And Effective Product To Clean Asphalt Shingles Without Damaging Them

The first step in maintaining your roof is to roof it right. If youre not doing the work yourself, choose a qualified professional roofer to do the job. And choose your roofing material wisely. Some roofing will require less maintenance than others. Choices include metal and slate. Some roofings types last longer than others, as well. That said, data shows that you are probably going to choose asphalt shingles, which can last a lifetime, but likely not without some repairs and maybe replacing a few shingles here and there. And, you may need to clean the roof once in a while.

Twenty years ago I bicycled about 500 miles along the Oregon / Northern California coast and marveled at the number of asphalt shingle roofs carpeted with lichens and moss. The roof growth gave character to many seaside and forest cottages. Though the roofs looked cool, I knew the shingles probably wouldnt last too much longer.

Lichens and moss accelerate shingle deterioration by loosening shingle granules and exposing the asphalt and fiberglass base materials. The granules arent just there to color the shingles they protect the base materials from sunlight and weathering.

About five years ago, I noticed a few patches of lichens growing on the north side of my roof. Like most lazy homeowners, I ignored the problem. Then about two years ago, when the roof looked like those out in the Pacific Northwest, I knew I couldnt put off treating the growth any longer.

Most Common Types Of Organic Growth On Your Metal Roof

How To Remove Roof Moss – And Keep It Away

Roof bacteria can reveal itself in many different forms and appearances. You may think you have mold growing on your metal roof, but it really could be moss, mildew, algae, lichen, or Gloeocapsa Magma. Metal roofs typically turn black with a greenish tint to it when they are saturated with organic growth. Organic growth can also grow on wood, asphalt shingles, concrete, slate tiles, Spanish tiles, and many other substrates especially if the sunlight is not so good in that area.

Also Check: How To Tell When You Need A New Roof

What If The Moss Grows Back

If the moss does return, do not rely on harsh chemical treatments or dry spells to kill it. Chemical treatments may harm shingles as well as moss, creating a more significant problem. Dead moss must still be removed by hand, or it will impede the flow of water off the roof and create issues. It may cause standing water. It may also clog gutters or allow for leaks.

Experienced Water Damage Repair

Our flooding damage team knows that repairing leaks and eliminating water is only half the battle. We use advanced tools and utilize our years of experience and also comprehensive training qualifications to thoroughly clean up and bring back the damaged areas in your home.

Prior to selecting a plan of action, we make use of the sophisticated technology of dampness detectors, hygrometers, infrared video cameras, and occasionally cams to determine water concentration so we know how much water were dealing with. We have a number of methods of water extraction that are very effective, including truck-mounted extraction devices and submersible pumps for high levels of water. When the water is eliminated, we use sophisticated speed drying tools such as industrial quality dehumidifiers, high velocity air movers, and effective blowers to evaporate wetness that would otherwise get trapped within walls, under floors, and inside of furniture.

Deodorizing and disinfecting products are additionally used to manage smells and prevent the development of microorganisms, mildew, and fungis.

Flooding Damage Experts You Can Count On

We can bill straight to your insurance carrier so you have one fewer thing to bother with.

Swamped Because Of Broken/Frozen Water lines?

We are your frozen and damaged water pipe experts. When you experience a broken water pipe, it is commonly due to the weather going down well below freezing.

Quick Basement or Cellar Water Damage Cleaning

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What Is The Algae On Your Shingles

Diagnosing what treatment to use when roof cleaning is as simple as taking a walk through the property with a professional. A professional will be able to take a look into what is actually growing on your roof, and will know the correct application in order to treat the algae and the amount of time it will take to remove it.

Lets talk about the two types of algae we come in contact with on a daily basis.

What Will Happen If You Wont Keep Your Roofs Clean


Lets get this thing clear and straight first, so youll remember why a clean roof is a must in keeping your home nice and clean.

Besides the regular form of damage because of the harsh environment, you should be really concerned for the risk of moss growth.

Moss can continue growing in between the shingles. When it does, it will lift up the shingles in an extremely unnatural way. Debris will gather and build up. This also causes water build up. Now this can lead to a damaged roof and a leaking home.

Moss can also attach to other creatures it can attach itself to birds, which can lead to the contamination of the roofs of the entire neighbourhood.

Honestly, I didnt think moss can do that much damage. But it does! So if you dont clean your roof regularly, moss will surely gather until one day you wake up and you already have water leaking inside your home. We dont want that, right?

So lets get that cleaning done!

Also Check: How Much Does A Roof Cost In California

S You Shouldnt Use To Remove Moss From A Roof

Unfortunately, there is a lot of bad advice out there about how to remove moss. While these methods may be effective at removing moss, they may also damage shingles in the process. We dont recommend you try to remove your moss by:

  • Scrubbing: You may be tempted to scrub the moss off the shingles because moss grips shingles quite strongly. However, scrubbing is likely to damage the asphalt shingles and remove their granules.
  • Pressure washing: Pressure washers can be very strong and certainly strong enough to break a shingles adhesive and lift it up. They also can strip asphalt shingles of their granule surface, which can ruin their performance and destroy their color. Any amount of pressure washing can cause serious problems with the roof, including major leaks. Never use a pressure washer or a pressurized stream of water on your roof.
  • Using harsh chemicals: High concentrations of bleach and other chemicals may do permanent damage to the shingles, increasing your risk for leaks.

Using any of these methods may also void your limited warranty on the roof. If youre in doubt about the safety or effectiveness of a moss removal method you want to try, consult with a professional roofer. A handful of roofers in areas where moss infections are common do specialize in removing moss. They may be able to do the work for you and, if not, may have recommendations about what your specific roof can benefit from.

Cleaning Products And Tools

While you are researching the methods of cleaning your roofs you need to look and compare various cleaning supplies as well. You will find a lot of bleaches and acids for getting rid of mold or debris, but you need to make sure that those bleaches are not harmful to the environment.

As I mentioned earlier, oxygen bleach is lighter than chlorine bleach, but chlorine bleach is going to give you the best result from the very first wash.

Now it is entirely up to you to choose a cleaning supply which will meet your expectations without hurting the environment.

Also Check: How To Clean Solar Roof Panels

Is Lichens On A Roof As Much Of A Problem As Moss

Yes and no, as we discuss below.

Because lichens growing on a roof surface does not have as much thickness of body as moss, it will hold less water on the roofsurface and is less of a wear factor than moss.

Our photographs show lichens growing on an asphalt roof shingle in situ . In the photo where our pen is inserted for scale we had “picked” the spot of lichens gently and flipped it over.

Our pen points to the hole left in the asphalt shingle as the lichens had such a good grip on the mineral granules that when removing the lichens it brought some of the roof protective coating along with itself.

If you click to enlarge the photo at above right you’ll see the actual mineral granules from the shingle adhered in the “roots” of the lichens.

Tips To Prevent Roof Algae & Moss

How to Remove Moss & Mold from your Roof Shingles with Wet & Forget Roof Shingle Demo Video

Roof algae and moss usually grow because of moisture and bacterial growth. You can stop that growth from ever starting in the first place, effectively making your roof last longer. Here are a few ways to prevent future growth once you have gotten rid of moss and algae:

  • Trim trees near the home: Overgrown trees often spread bacteria onto the roof and cause algae growth. Make sure to plant trees far enough away from the house and trim them back regularly so they arent hanging over the roof.
  • Get rid of standing water: Standing water is another factor that can contribute to mold and algae growth. Minimize standing water on the roof by fixing shingles, cleaning gutters, and performing small roof repairs as necessary.

Recommended Reading: Where To Get Roof Trusses

What Does Lichens Look Like On Buildings In Nature And In The Microscope

How do I Recognize Lichens on a Building?

What does lichens growth look like on an asphalt shingle roof and how do we distinguish this material and its effects from algae, moss, or other roof problems?

Lichens on an asphalt shingle roof in New York .

Our photo shows blue-green lichens covering a significant portion of the roof surface, and below we provide closeup photographs showing just what lichens does to the roof surface if you try to remove it

Lichens, one of the most hardy growth organisms found in nature, can grow in harsh conditions. Lichens is often found growing on roof shingles, especially asphalt and wood shingles as we show here. Lichens may even grow on some window glass.

What is Lichens?

Lichens is an admirably tough symbiotic organism made up of two partners, typically an algae and a fungus .

The fungus obtains nutrients out of the surface on which the lichens is growing as well as primarily out of the organism’s contact with air.

The algae provides photosynthesis to the duet.

Lichens on hot dry rock in Mexico

Our photo shows lichens growing on sun-baked rock in Boca de la Canada in Guanajuato – central Mexico.

Lichens not only grow in almost every environment on earth, they have some useful functions as a source of perfume, dye, or medical compounds.

Nevertheless, most people don’t enjoy seeing lichens on their building, and as we describe here, lichens may shorten the life of some roofing materials.

Lichens on cold damp rock in Iceland .


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