When To Call Roofing Professionals
A licensed roofing contractor will know how best to handle your roof algae issue. A professional can inspect your roofing system, determine whether the algae has caused any underlying issues, and clean your roof in a way that will not cause further damage. A contractor can then recommend ways to prevent future algae growth, such as special roof coatings or gutter replacement. If the algae have damaged your roofing system, a contractor can schedule repairs.
Contact a roofing professional the day you notice signs of potential algae growth on your roof. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to treat. Save yourself the time, money, and hassle of deeper issues by calling a roofer right away. If you see discoloration, watermarks, dark spots, peeling paint, mold on your chimney, rotting wood, or crumbling drywall, you need to call a professional roofing expert. Otherwise, you could put yourself at risk of property damage and health issues.
Effects Of Roof Algae And Mildew On Your Low
TPO roofs are made with thermoplastic polyolefin membrane that covers the surface of the roof. These roofs are commonly used both in commercial and residential settings where a buildings roof is low sloped or flat. When algae forms on a TPO roof, there may be areas where water is pooling due to structural design and/or an actual roof drainage problem. Your professional roofing contractor will be able to assess the root cause of the water ponding and recommend a solution. The roofing contractor will also be able to recommend the best way to clean the roof of the algae and mildew.
How To Remove Mold From Roof Shingles
Mold can be found nearly anywhere there is a lot of moisture, such as around leaky pipes, wet basements, and even on your roof. Characterized by its black-greenish hue, algae can gradually eat away at roof shingles, resulting in rot and an unsightly appearance. Mold on roof shingles often appears as black streaks or stains, and while it is more common in climates that experience warm, humid summers, mold can grow in a wide range of conditions.
Removing fungus, moss, mildew, and associated stains from a roof is no easy feat. That is why many homeowners rely on experienced roofing contractors to complete the job. However, if you believe you are up for the task, take the time to protect your property and gather the right equipment and supplies for the job. Learn how to remove mold from roof shingles and discover why you may want to consider hiring a professional.
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Whats The Safest Way To Clean Algae And Moss From Asphalt Shingle Roofs
You might think that taking a power washer to the roof is the quickest and most effective way to remove algae and moss from the shingles. But power washers are too strong for the shingle granules and will wear them down. Asphalt shingles are designed to withstand rain, not the force of a power washer. Power washing your roof will reduce its lifespan.
Instead, gently pray the roof down with a mix of half bleach and half water. Let the mixture sit on the roof for 20 minutes before you rinse it off. But be sure to wet your plants around the foundation down with water first. This will protect them from the bleach mixture run-off. Then, rinse your foundation plants down with clean water again, so they arent damaged.
Rinsing the roof after bleaching it wont make it look pristine. Your roof will actually look a bit worse before it gets better. The algae will slowly disappear with each rainfall after you bleach it. Moss, however, will look yellow right after bleaching. Gradually, it will loosen from the roof shingles. Once it does, then you can safely remove it with a leaf blower. It can take several weeks to several months for the moss to pull away from the shingles.
Difference Between Moss And Algae
Though they might be grouped as the same thing because they grow in the same area of your home, moss and algae are actually quite different and distinct.
Moss always appears more green and fluffy-looking than algae, though it might appear browner during dryer seasons. Moss will also grow up off the roof, while algae will grow flush to the shingles and fixtures, staying flat and unobtrusive. Algae will appear in many different colors such as gray, blue, green, or brown.
A small amount of moss is relatively harmless, but left unattended, it can grow and eventually damage your asphalt shingles. Moss should be removed. Algae actually fosters the growth of mold, which can lead to very serious issues. Algae, too, should be removed quickly and efficiently.
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How Do Roof Leaks Happen
When fungi growth leads to roof damage and leaks, the problem becomes critical. If the damage has already traveled to this extent, the task to restore your roof will involve more than just a cleanup. If water is now leaking into your attic, you will need to identify the source of the leaks and the extent of the damage both externally and internally. In cases such as these, the best option is to hire a roofing professional to examine the situation and perform the needed repair work.
Roof leaks can stem from various types of damage, which are often the result of gradual fungi growth. Some of the most common sources of roof leaks include:
Any time a major storm hits your area be it a blizzard, snowstorm or hurricane you should contact a roofing professional to inspect your roof the moment the storm has passed. Storms can rip away random parts from a roof and render interiors vulnerable to wind, water and the further spread of malignant, toxic fungi.
Benefits Of Hiring A Roofing Contractor
Mold is typically the result of algae growth. Mold spores can easily become airborne, jumping from roof to roof. That is why you may see a mold problem in a certain neighborhood. Certain conditions are more favorable for mold, such as roofs with leaks or wood rot. Oftentimes, the presence of mold is a sign that there other roofing problems exist. While you may not visibly see roof damage, that does not mean that damage does not exist. When you call in an experienced roofing contractor, underlying roof problems may be found. Making these repairs can reduce the likelihood of mold growth in the future.
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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.
Should You Remove Moss
When you get a roof replacement, you may want to have your roofers install the new roof over top of the old. In certain circumstances, this can help you save money. However, if your old roof has moss growth, can you still use this method?
You may need to deal with the moss before the full roof replacement. Your roofers will need to remove all the shingles on your old roof, or they may need to remove the largest chunks of moss with a pressure washer and then apply the new roof. It is only advisable to use a pressure washer because you no longer need to worry about the condition of the old roof. The new one will offer the protection your home needs.
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What Are Those Ugly Black Streaks On My Roof
Although these dark spots and ugly black streaks on your roof may look like dirt, mildew, soot or mold, what they really are is algae. The most common type is known as gloeocapsa magmaâalso known as blue green algae.
This algae growth usually begins as small spots and then eventually becomes visible streaks. By the time this algae is noticed by the homeowner, it has usually been on the roof at least two or more months.
Why does this algae appear to be black? Gloeocapsa has the ability to form a protective darkly pigmented outer coating that shields the algae from damaging UV rays. This is what makes those unattractive black streaks on your roof!
Although algae can be found on all types of roofing, it tends to be most common on asphalt shingles.
Structural Effects Of Roof Algae And Mildew
Roof algae and mildew dont necessarily pose the same toxicity dangers as some molds do, but they still can be a sign of a bigger problem.
To accurately assess algaes impact on a roofs structure and performance, building owners should contact a roofing professional. Only a professional has the expertise to determine whether algae is only aesthetically displeasing or is actually pointing to a structural issue in a roof.
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Get Rid Of Mold And Algae On Your Roof
The old standard method for cleaning algae and mold stains from asphalt shingles is to spray on a solution of chlorine bleach and water. Some people add TSP for extra cleaning power. You let the solution sit for about 5 minutes, or so. Then rinse it off with garden hose, not a pressure washer, which can damage your roofing.
However, I’m not recommending bleach for a few reasons: It’s toxic to plants , and it can damage shingles if it’s left on too long or isn’t completely rinsed off. You can protect your plants from bleach spray, but then you have the rinse water pouring down your gutters into your yard, etc. Not worth the trouble.
What Is Roof Algae
Roof algae is algae growth that forms on the building or a roof. The growth is an algae organism, similar to what youd find in a pond or on an uncleaned fish tank, but it develops on the roof of a building instead. Like pond and fish tank algae, roof algae requires a lot of warmth and water to form. Thus, its most common in warm and humid locations like Raleigh, NC. Roof algae may or may not impact your roof. In addition, the solution may be different for sloped and low-sloped or flat roofing materials.
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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.
Stop Roof Algae From Coming Back
To keep the algae from coming back, insert 6-inch-wide strips of zinc or copper under the row of shingling closest to the roof peak, leaving an inch or two of the lower edge exposed to the weather. That way whenever it rains, some of the metal molecules will wash down the roof and kill any algae trying to regain a foothold on your shingles.
You can probably see this same principle working on roofs in your neighborhood. Look for chimneys with copper flashing the areas directly below the flashing will be free of any algae stains.
The strips also work on roofs suffering from moss buildup. Just scrub it off first with a brush, then bleach as above.
Need help with home maintenance? Read our reviews on home warranty providers.
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How To Clean Roof Shingles With Bleach
Cleaning your roof is one of the most important practices to keep your home in good condition and enhance the roofs durability. However, when cleaning your roof, you always have to ensure youre using the best industry practices to avoid resulting in damages and repairing costs. So, how best can you clean your roof? This is one of the most sought-after questions, and were going to provide in-depth details on how to do that.
In this post, well talk about how to clean roof shingles with bleach and other ideal tips to help you clean your roof properly. Its also crucial to conduct more research to ensure you have more information about the cleaning process.
Should I Use A Biocide Or Fungicide During Roof Mold Cleanup
Use of fungicidal encapsulants may reduce but not eliminate the risk of future mold growth, primarily, or more lastingly because such encapsulants reduce the future uptake of moisture in the wood materials.
Fungicidal chemicals themselves can be expected to break down over time and should not be relied on as “mold proofing”.
See these articles for details on using mold sprays, fungicides, coatings, encapsulants in attics
In our roof interior photo at left you can see antique roof framing along with black stains and probably some mold growth from a long history of roof leaks. Even in this case, in our OPINION the reasons to remove and replace roof sheathing and framing would normally be based on the condition of the roof framing and sheathing, not on the presence of mold or stains.
We remove mold from roof framing and sheathing
We replace rotted or unsafe roof framing or sheathing, combining that work with a new roof covering as well.
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How To Remove Moss From A Roof
If your roof has sprouted a moss infection, you can remove it before it becomes serious enough to impact the performance of your roof. Moss is tough and typically you will not be able to remove it by hand. However, you can use a chemical solution to loosen the moss without damaging the shingles. We dont recommend that you step on the roof for moss removal.
Materials Youll Need
- A ladder .
- A moss-specific cleaner that does not use bleach and is rated by the EPA.
- Or your own cleaner mix of mild bleach or mild detergent mixed with water in a spray bottle. You may mix 2 cups of chlorine bleach with 2 gallons of water. Or you can use 8 ounces of dish soap with 2 gallons of water.
How To Remove Moss From a Roof
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.
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How To Clean Roof Algae
The easiest way to clean algae off roofs is with the use of bleach and water. As long as the problem has not advanced to the point where the roof is seriously compromised, a 50/50 mix of bleach and water should clear away the algae and restore the cleanliness of your shakes or shingles. Bleach is the active ingredient that kills algae on contact.
After mixing bleach and water in a large plastic bucket, gradually spread the mixture over your roof with a mop. The algae should quickly loosen up and wipe away from the shingles as you cover the roof, foot by foot. Once you have finished, hose the mixture off the roof. This stage is a good time to check your gutters for any obstructions that could possibly impede the drainage process.
To prevent the re-growth of algae, line the shingles with copper flashing to inhibit any further development of algae, which is allergic to copper. Better yet, contact a roofing service professional to perform this service. A licensed roof cleaner will know how to keep balance and perform the job fast on a residential rooftop.
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.
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