How to Safely Remove Algae From Your Roof
The presence of algae on your roof is not only unattractive but can become a costly headache. Taking action to remove it is vital to minimize its impact and prevent damage to your home. So, if you have noticed algae on your roof, what should you do now?
The best way to safely and effectively remove algae from your roof is to hire a professional to perform a roof treatment. While it may be tempting to do yourself, roof treatments require special soft washing equipment and cleansers. Plus, who wants to climb a second-story ladder? In the end, calling a professional is a more sensible and cost-effective decision. More on that later in the post.
This post will cover everything you need to know about algae on your roof. We will explain what it is, where it comes from, and the precautions you should take prior to removing it. We will then get to all the benefits of hiring a professional to remove the algae.
WHAT IS THE ALGAE (OR GREEN STUFF) ON MY ROOF?
Gloeocapsa magma is the scientific term for the algae on your roof. While it is technically cyanobacteria and not algae, we refer to it as algae in this post because that is what most people know it as due to its green color.
As the algae feeds on the limestone in your shingles, it leaves behind a black residue that streaks down the roof. If left untreated for enough time, the algae can separate the granules in the shingles and require them to be replaced.
WHERE DOES THE ALGAE ON MY ROOF COME FROM?
Gloeocapsa magma spiked in the southeastern United States in the 1990s. It is thought that this is a result of rising humidity. Around the same time, roof manufacturers were switching shingle filler from paper and ceramic to a cheaper, but algae-attracting, limestone filler.
Algae is most common in areas that have a cool and moist climate. Because of the climate in the Midwest, these roofs hold moisture longer and create a breeding ground for algae. Algae colonize where there is a lack of direct sunlight, which is typically the north side of the roof. While it is most commonly found on shingles, algae can also be seen on siding and other areas of a home’s exterior.
Algae spores blow from roof to roof, through the air, and land on your roof. As more algae lands on the roof, the dark areas prevent the roof from reflecting sunlight. This can result in excess heat on the surface, shortening the roof’s lifetime. Eventually, your roof can become so dirty that you may believe the shingles need to be replaced. However, Gloeocapsa magma can be neutralized with the correct treatment.
HOW TO REMOVE ALGAE FROM THE ROOF?
REMOVING THE ALGAE OFF YOUR ROOF YOURSELF
Bleach will neutralize and kill algae off your roof and remove the black streaking. However, this comes with risks. Bleach is corrosive and dangerous to plants and pets. It must be diluted before applied and plants must be rinsed down. Also, your home needs a proper place to drain chemicals. Not to mention, treating a roof requires the use of a ladder.
Due to the number of risks at play, we do not recommend attempting to treat a roof yourself.
HIRE A PROFESSIONAL TO TREAT THE ALGAE ON YOUR ROOF
There are many key advantages to hiring a professional to treat your roof. First, hiring an insured professional will protect you against any harm caused to your roof or the worker.
Second, it is likely there are more living organisms on your roof than just algae. Gloeocapsa magma has a symbiotic relationship with certain fungi that leads to the growth of lichens. A professional will check and treat the roof for mold, lichens, and the beginning stages of moss.
Lastly, a professional will be certified. They will have access to chemicals that you cannot simply pick up off the shelf at your local hardware store. Because of that, your roof treatment should come with a warranty.
Clean sweep ROOF TREATMENTS
All in all, hiring a professional like Clean Sweep to safely remove algae from your roof is an easy decision. It will save you time, money, and ensure your roof is being treated carefully and effectively.
Our roof treatment utilizes a low-pressure soft wash with biodegradable cleansers to safely and effectively restore the look of your roof. This process is designed to help maintain the integrity of your roof and prevent further damage by eliminating algae, black streaks, and moss at their roots. Feel free to contact our team today to learn more.