One of the most commonly neglected areas of the house when it comes to routine maintenance is the roof. Many homeowners simply don’t think there’s much to be done other than taking care of any noticeable leaks. However, the roof is one of the most important parts of the home and does require routine maintenance to remain strong and effective for a longer period of time. Roof repair or replacement can become extremely costly, not to mention, a major inconvenience to you and your family. Rather than waiting for something to go wrong, regular roof cleanings can help you save a lot of time, energy, and money in the long run.
When to Clean Your Roof
We definitely think setting up an annual schedule is a must, just to keep things from getting out of hand, where you’d require a more thorough and in-depth cleaning. Generally, you should clean your roof once a year, as this will keep it looking new and attractive, while also allowing you to catch any weak points or damage early on.
When you notice your roof looking dark or discolored, these are signs of blue-green algae growth. If you are noticing thick green patches, these are signs of a moss problem. Moss is a serious issue, as it can impact asphalt shingles, causing them to curl and blow off, eventually causing leaks. Algae don’t have a direct negative effect on the roof, other than the appearance.
Choose an overcast day, if possible, so your cleaning solutions won’t dry out too fast. Begin by looking for and repairing any loose shingles, and then clean out your gutters so your cleaning solution can easily runoff. Protect your yard by removing furniture and cover your yard in plastic if using a bleach solution to protect grass from damage. Remove any leaves or other debris to have a clean workspace.
Mix together your cleaning solution. You can find some eco-friendly options at your local home improvement store, or mix one together yourself at home using bleach and water. You can also add some non-ammonia heavy cleaner for more effective results.
Begin by soaking the shingles with water. Now, spray your cleaning solution evenly throughout the entire roof, taking care not to miss any spots. Otherwise, the roof will come out looking spotty in color. Using a water sprayer, rinse off the cleaning solution. Make sure there’s enough pressure, which will help dislodge any moss or algae. Do not use a power washer, as those can dislodge shingles.
If your roof is heavily coated in algae/moss, repeat the above steps once the roof is dry, but leave the cleaning solution for 30 minutes before rinsing. You can also use a broom to scrub off any leftover algae or moss.
Now that you’ve cleaned your roof, you’ll want to take precautions to keep it cleaner for longer. Begin by cleaning the roof of debris regularly. This means brushing off leaves and any other build-up. Trim any branches and other plants that may be creating a shady environment, as these are the conditions in which moss and algae form. Use a stain blocker to help offer resistance to build-up for up to three years.
When cleaning your roof, be sure to use caution. It can become slippery when you’re washing or staining, so be sure to wear non-slip grip shoes and other additional protective gear. Be sure to wash your roof at least once a year, or as you see build-up keep your roof looking clean and clear, and most importantly, strong so it can continue to provide a comfortable shelter for you and your family.