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What Will Remove Moss From Roof Shingles

The Difference Between Moss Treatment And Moss Removal

How to Clean and Prevent a Mossy Roof | Ask This Old House

It’s ideal to treat and remove moss as it is growing and thriving . If you treat your roof once a year, moss won’t grow beyond the point of routine maintenance. As a rule of thumb, seeing a tint of green on your roof means the moss is outgrowing the maintenance phase, and you may need a restoration plan to completely clear it off. The difference between restoration and maintenance as it relates to moss is whether youre treating the moss or removing it it’s also the factor which determines if you can do it yourself.

Moss treatment means killing the moss, which begins at the time of treatment. Moss treatment is the process of applying a solution that will kill moss over timetypically five to six weeks. When performed at regular intervals, moss treatment prevents moss growth, which often eliminates the need for moss removal. Think of it like you think about changing your car’s oil versus having to replace the engine.

Moss removal clears the moss at the time of service, by scraping the shingles. This will need to be followed with a moss treatment to prevent future growth. Today we are going to do both moss removal and moss treatment. We’d like to note that DAPrDAN doesn’t offer moss removal as a service, but we’re happy to recommend other vendors if you contact us at

One big thing to avoid: Dont use pressure washers on your roof. If you do, you’ll strip away the layer of sand and grit, which offers traction and is the protective layer of your roof.

How To Do Roof Moss Removal On Your Own

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While you can get over-the-counter roof moss killer, you still need to apply the moss killer safely and efficiently. Here are the simple steps you can take to ensure that the moss is taken care of and doesnt come back.

Note: wear non-slip shoes, gloves, a mask, and cover your limbs. This will prevent you from slipping and protect you from any dangers, like bugs or mold, that may be waiting for you on the roof.

Step : Prevent Future Moss Growth By Installing Zinc Or Copper On The Roof

Prevent a moss problem from returning by adding strips of galvanized or copper-clad sheet metal directly under the top ridge on either side of the roof. Copper is more toxic to moss and algae, but zinc is much cheaper. You can buy sheet metal in rolls and cut into strips from 2 to 10 cm. Secure the strips to the roof with roofing felt nails or screws with rubber washers.

You should also consider pruning any branches that protrude above the roof natural sunlight is an effective way of preventing moss.

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How To Remove Moss From Roof Tiles

Does your roof look far too green for your liking? Use the following methods, tools, and materials to eradicate moss from your roof.

The only greenery you should be able to see near your rooftop is the leaves growing off branches from surrounding trees. If you have moss growing on your roof, then its time to do something about it.

If you have moss growing on your roof, theres a high chance you have a north facing roof. A north facing roof usually has little sunlight, which enables moss to buildup on the roof. Moss can grow quite quickly, and it will grow in between roof tiles, filling in the voids and lifting up roof tiles and slates.

Moss growing under roof slate and tiles can push the slate out of position allowing rainwater to seep into the roof structure. When rain finds its way into the roofing structure thats when decay and rot sets in.

If you want to clean moss off a roof yourself, you will have to plan how you are going to kill the moss and remove it effectively. You will need to treat the roof to stop the moss from growing back.

Its recommended anyone cleaning moss off a roof should do it on a cloudy day. When applying roof cleaning products onto a roof on a hot sunny day, it will quickly evaporate, and you wont get the desired result.

Most roof cleaning products require at least 20 minutes for it to absorb into the moss. However, there is more than one way to remove moss from your roof tiles.

Roof Moss Treatments

How to Clean Moss from the Roof

Goodbye Clingy Moss: How To Remove Moss From Your Roof

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Green signifies a number of things. In the fairytale/fantasy world, it would represent a cottage deep within a tranquil forest, far away from evils clutches. In real life, and with the exception of green painted tiles, there is no other reason for a green roof except wide spread growth of the plant that is moss.

If you have been a victim of this situation before, you probably know how hard it is to fight and prevent, even with dedication and a host of sophisticated cleaning materials. Once that green moss blanket forms and covers a section of your roof, you know that your house is in trouble. Its effects when in full bloom are very destructive to any house roof and later lead to leaking and seeping of water through the roof on rainy days. In no time, the roof gets damaged and has to be replaced.

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How To Remove Moss From Roof

A green, moss-covered roof makes you think youve gotten into a fairy tale, complete with a quaint little lumberjack cottage. But in the real world, moss is less of a fantasy than a nightmare. If left untreated, the lumpy green can attack practically any roofing material most commonly wood and asphalt, but also metal, clay and concrete and thus drastically shorten the service life.

Moss starts out as a thin green layer on and between the shingles, but then it lifts those shingles as it grows, allowing water to seep underneath. Hello, wood rot and leaks. Fortunately, moss removal is a fairly simple task that you can do seasonally or as needed to keep your roof weatherproof and good looking. Follow these steps to remove moss from a roof.

Tools & materials

Algae & Moss Prevention And Cleaning For Asphalt Roofing Systems

Maintenance Solutions

To understand how to deal with the recurring problem of algae and moss growth on rooftops, it is important to learn what they are and how they grow and spread. Although some similarities exist, algae and moss are very different and require slightly different procedures to prevent or to remove.

Often mistaken as mold or mildew, the black discoloration and streaks visible on many roofs across the United States and Canada are actually algae. The algae can form w here moisture tends to dwell on roof surfaces. Coastal or humid climates create the most conducive conditions for algae growth. The most common type, gloeocapsa magma or blue green algae, protects itself from damaging ultraviolet rays by producing a dark pigmented sheath. The algae discoloration typically begins as small spots then quickly transforms into streaks on the roof plane. By the time the algae is visible, it likely has been present for several months or longer.

Moss is a non-vascular plant that obtains water through its leaves, unlike most plants that gather water through its root system. Moss must therefore have a moist environment to survive. In North America, moss tends to grow on north facing roof planes that receive less direct sunlight and stay damp longer than south facing planes. Overhanging tree branches provide additional shade and drop debris on the roof that further holds in moisture and acts as a food source for moss.

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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.

See our guide on how much is a metal roof.

So how do you get rid of it?

How To Prevent Moss Growth On Roofs

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Moss grows most commonly on north-facing roofs because moisture lingers without direct sun exposure. Roofs beneath tree limbs can also become mossy because of the shade and the buildup of tree debris. Trimming tree limbs back from your house so that sun can reach the roof will hinder moss growth.

In persistently mossy roof areas, you could attach strips of zinc or copper to the top of the roof. Zinc and copper molecules kill moss and algae. Special asphalt shingles that include copper offer another long-term solution to prevent moss growth. PJ Fitzpatrick has been in business since 1980. Weve provided this information about how to remove moss from roofs to help you maintain the integrity of your home. If you have any questions about the process, or need assistance, please dont hesitate to contact us.

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There Are Several Methods For The Removal Of Moss And Lichen:

Spraying moss with a toxic wash

A toxic wash solution can be used to wash the roof, although care must be taken as the solution can be harmful to plants and animals. It is not recommended to remove moss by pressure washing as this can force water into the roof space, particularly if sprayed upward from ground level.

Fitting copper to inhibit moss growth on the roof

Copper wire can be fitted across the roof at intervals using nails or screws on the side of the roof. Copper ridges can also be fitted across the roof ridge line. As rainwater passes over the copper, a reaction takes place. The water that runs down the roof will leave a residue that inhibits moss growth.

Scraping moss off the roof

Moss can be scraped off by hand but this must be performed with caution to avoid damaging roof tiles, particularly in the case of timber or asphalt shingles

Before proceeding with any remedial work to remove moss or lichen, we would recommend speaking to a roofing maintenance professional. If unsure, you should contact the for further details.

Never Use A Pressure Washer

The worst way to remove moss is to use a pressure washer this will remove moss from your roof without a doubt, but it is the fastest way to cause damage to your roof shingles as the force can break them, increase weaknesses and strip the surface granules from your tiles. Additionally, if there are any weaknesses or leaks the pressure washer can cause flooding to the loft space.

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Rinse Off The Cleaning Solution

After youve sprayed your cleaning solution on the moss, its time to relax for a little while. Let the cleaner sit for about 20-45 minutes. While its sitting, the chemicals in the solution are killing it and loosening its grip on your roof. After that, you should lightly scrub with a soft-bristled brush and then rinse with plain water using a hose thats on a low-pressure setting.

Its normal if it doesnt immediately come off of your roof. It typically takes a few days for it to dry off and blow away with the wind. If your home still has a lot on it, you might even want to use a leaf blower after a few days to blow off the remains.

How To Remove And Prevent Black Algae Stains On Asphalt Shingle Roofs

What is the Process of Removing Moss from a Roof ...

If you live in a humid area of the country, youve probably seen unsightly dark streaks on asphalt shingle roofs. Though often attributed to an accumulation of dirt, defective shingles, mold, or mildew the most common culprit is actually a blue-green algae known as Gloeocapsa Magma that is spread by airborne spores.

While algae growth does little harm to roofing, the stains dont help the overall appearance or resale value of your home.

You may also have noticed that algae stains are absent directly below the metal flashing around chimneys or roof vents. This is due to fact that copper and the zinc coating on galvanized sheet metal are toxic to algae. Every time it rains, trace amounts of metals are washed down the roof, inhibiting algae growth.

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Option A: Routine Care

This is what most Puget Sound homeowners should do routinely to prevent moss from growing on the roof in the first place. And its also a great way to take care of very light current moss growth on the roofIm talking about moss growth that is no higher than the thickness of your asphalt comp roof shingles. It might also be a good option for even thicker moss, but keep in mind 1) you will be looking at dead moss for a long time, and 2) if you arent vigilant with treatments, the dead moss becomes the perfect garden for new moss growth and youll be right back where you started. If you have anything more than very thin moss or if you need the roof looking great for a sale, dont use this method. Zinc sulfate powder and chlorine bleach is the most common moss treatment, but there are other options where the environmental concern is high. Here are the steps:

  • Air-blow the loose debris from roof
  • Line roof with moss treatment powder
  • Clean out gutters and downspouts
  • Clean up debris from ground

Detergent And The Environment

A final word about using detergent to remove moss from your roof: that detergent has to go somewhere. Websites claiming that you can just sweep it off with a broom forget to mention that now you have detergent seeping into the greenspace and water system around your home. Modern detergents generally lack the phosphorus of decades past, but that doesnt mean theyre safe for the environment.

Would you drink a cup of water mixed with detergent? Of course not. You know its unhealthy and dangerous. So why would you sweep that same detergent onto the ground around your home?

Your best solution for removing moss from your roof is always to hire a professional. At Keeping It Clean, we use only environmentally safe cleaning products and the most advanced equipment in the industry to fully remove moss and algae down to the root without damaging your roof. Give us a call anytime or fill out the form below to set up a free appointment.

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Install Zinc Or Copper For Future Prevention

Last but not least, its important to take the necessary steps for moss prevention on your roof. Removing it from your home is only half the battle. Not its time to prevent it from coming back.

How to keep moss off your roof involves installing strips of zinc-coated or copper-coated sheets of metal on both sides of the roof below the top ridge.

Copper is known to be more toxic to algae, but zinc is typically much less expensive, making it more affordable for homeowners. Purchase the sheet metal in rolls and cut it into two- to four-inch strips. Use roofing nails to attach the strips to your house.

How To Kill Roof Moss

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It may seem charming on quaint cottages, but roof moss can cause extensive damage to your roof and home. Moss can ruin shingles, degrade the underlying surface and threaten your home’s structural integrity. It can even affect your family’s health. By being proactive with moss treatment, your can extend your roof’s life and protect your family.

With these simple steps, you can kill roof moss and avoid costly home repairs:

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Do Moss And Algae Cause Roof Or Shingle Damage

Moss can be detrimental to the performance of shingles or the entire roofing system, so it is important to remove moss as soon as it is detected. Moss traps water in its leaves, and this means that the shingles beneath it are consistently wet and will eventually decay. Tiny moss spores can also lodge beneath the edge of a shingle and will lift the shingle as the moss grows into a larger clump. This will cause the underlayment below to be exposed to the rain and will eventually lead to wood rot and roof leaks. Removing algae promptly can save a homeowner thousands of dollars by extending the life of their roof.

Algae, on the other hand, is mostly unattractive, but it is still wise for a homeowner to treat it because it can decrease the value of the home. When algae usually gloeocapsa magma dies, it leaves black-green streaks and/or dark spots on a roof. When these streaks are left untreated, they have a tendency to stain the roof shingles permanently. In very extreme cases, the moisture trapped on the roof by the algae can also shorten the life of the roofing system and eventually lead to wood rot and leaks much like moss does, but this usually happens over a longer period of time or if conditions are perfect for algae growth.


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