Frequently Asked Questions About Roof Maintenance

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions plus answers about roof maintenance and cleaning. If you don’t see what you’re looking for, please call us at 877-926-9966 and we’d be happy to help answer all your questions.

Ventilation is important year round. In the Summer, heat from the sun is running attic temperatures up to 120 degrees or more. This overwhelms the insulation on the attic floor and causes your home to heat up.

In the Winter the cold air from outside cools your attic space. Because of how efficiently we are sealing the walls of our home, heat and moisture generated in the fall, and winter months is carried by rising heat into the attic space. When warm air meets cool air in the attic moisture is created. Moisture is a conductor, and insulation is an insulator. If moisture infiltrates insulation, the insulator becomes a conductor. Thus compounding the problem of heat loss because now the insulation is not doing it’s job to hold heat in the home.

This is why ventilation is important all year long. Ventilation is doing it’s job when it is removing hot air in the Summer, and moist air in the Winter.

If you need a ventilation inspection, please contact us for a free evaluation, or call 877-926-9966.

Working with a professional roofing service ensures that your roof repairs are done correctly and safely. They have the expertise, equipment, and materials needed to provide long-lasting solutions. There’s no question a homeowner can do a roof themselves, but there are inherent risks including injury, faulty installation, possible re-work, and home damage.

Hiring roof repair services is essential to address roofing issues promptly. Delaying repairs can lead to more extensive and costly damage in the long run.

Homeowners should schedule roof maintenance at least once a year, though more frequent checks are advisable after severe weather events or in areas with high levels of vegetation, tree debris,  or moisture that can promote moss and algae growth.

After a roof replacement, continue regular inspections and maintenance to ensure the new roof’s longevity. Address any issues early to prevent significant damage or premature roof failure.

The duration of the roof cleaning process can vary depending on the size of the roof, its condition, and the cleaning method used. On average, it can take anywhere from a few hours to a full day or even longer if it is a large home or commercial property.

Ridge venting is one of the many ways to vent a roof. Depending on your roof type, it may be the most efficient way. (Contact us for an evaluation of your roof)

Ridge Venting

Ridge venting works by cutting a continuous slot at the peak of your roof to provide a consistent area for air to exhaust from your attic space.

Some ridge vents are warranted against leaking, and failure for the duration of the roof system. Many of the vents are the shingle over type. This means that the roofing material can cover the top of the vent and hide the fact that there is a vent there at all.

For more information about ridge vent systems contact us, or call 877-926-9966

Roof maintenance services can include inspections, cleaning, repairing or replacing damaged shingles, sealing leaks, and gutter cleaning and repair.  Proactive roof maintenance is proven to extend the life of your roof.

Common roof cleaning methods include:

  • Pressure Washing: Suitable for certain types of roofs, but can damage shingles if not done correctly.
  • Soft Washing: Uses a lower pressure and a high volume of water with a mixture of cleaning solutions to remove growths without damaging the roof.
  • Chemical Cleaning: Involves applying chemicals designed to kill moss, algae, and lichen without the need for high-pressure washing.
  • Moss Cleanup/Proofing: To clean a roof with moss, it’s often recommended to apply a moss-killing product and then gently remove the dead moss by brushing or low-pressure washing, followed by preventive treatments to inhibit future growth.

Simply put the answer is NO.

Asphalt shingles, unlike wood shakes are manufactured with components that create a roof system.

An asphalt composite shingle starts out as a woven fiberglass sheet nearly 1/8” thick. The fiberglass is saturated on both sides with asphalt. The top layer of asphalt, while still molten is embedded with Ceramic Granules.

Granules have 2 functions:

  1. To give the shingle it’s color.
  2. To protect the asphalt from the harmful UV rays of the sun.

Along with the granules, Asphalt is the waterproof component of the shingle, and the Fiberglass is the chassis that holds the shingle together.

Asphalt is a very volatile product (meaning that it is easily affected by heat causing change in viscosity and increasing expansion and contraction) and when granules are missing and there is more UV exposure the asphalt gets dried out and causes roof failure.

Pressure washing a roof when done improperly minimally removes granules that are so important to the longevity of your roof. Because asphalt composite is a thin product that can be easily torn it is not too difficult to cut the shingles with the pressure wand.

Many pressure washers will assure you that they are experienced and will not cause damage. They may be right, but how can they guarantee it?

The adhesion of granules reduces as the roof ages. The challenge for a pressure washer is how to gauge their pressure. The problem for you is HOW WOULD YOU KNOW IF THEY ARE DOING IT RIGHT?

It is difficult to know. The big question is, why pressure wash anyway? The only reason is that it is a quick fix. Quick fixes typically come with a bill to pay later.

Maybe it would be better to examine where moss comes from, and what can be done from a preventative standpoint to keep your roof healthy and looking clean.

It’s advisable to inspect and potentially clean your roof at least once or twice a year, especially after severe weather conditions, to remove any debris and prevent the buildup of harmful substances.

Roof cleaning is crucial for maintaining the appearance and longevity of your roof. It prevents the buildup of harmful substances like moss, algae, and lichen, which can cause roofing materials to deteriorate over time. Regular cleaning can also improve your home’s curb appeal and potentially increase its value as well as ensure the Manufacturer’s or Workmanship warranty isn’t voided due to lack of maintenance.

Regular roof inspections are vital for identifying potential issues early on, such as missing shingles, damage from debris, or signs of water leakage, allowing for timely repairs and maintenance.

To reduce a roof’s temperature, you can consider cool roofing materials, proper insulation, and ventilation. Cool roofing materials reflect more sunlight and absorb less heat. Adequate insulation and ventilation can help regulate the temperature inside your home, reducing the heat transfer from the roof.

The key to dealing with moss is being proactive. In the Pacific Northwest we are truly blessed by our clean environment (Crucial for moss growth) and beautiful large evergreen trees. And some people say it rains around here once in a while.

Unfortunately the combination of these things make for perfect fungus and moss growth conditions.

So what can you do? Depending on your circumstance, and environmental consciousness here are a few suggestions.

  1. Remove any foliage or structures that might be shading an area to the point that sun rarely or never hits it.
  2. Keep the roof free from decaying organic material. I.E. Leaves, Needles, Pine Cones etc. Depending on the volume, if you are like most Northwestern Homeowners a minimum of a fall cleaning and a spring cleaning is necessary.
  3. Keep the Fungus off of the roof. Fungus and algae grow on everything in the Northwest as well. It is easily treated, and needs to be stayed on top of.

Moss on a roof is usually quite visible, appearing as green, fuzzy patches that thrive in damp, shaded areas. Moss holds moisture against the roof surface like a sponge and roots in the granules, which can damage the roofing materials over time.

Note: The methods described below only work if maintenance is frequent. If debris is left on the roof in a moist and shaded area more extreme cleaning measures will be necessary. All of which will shorten the life of your roof, and can cause leaks.

Debris Removal- Debris should be removed with a leaf blower, or water from a garden hose. Leaf blowers work best when debris is dry. If the volume is too great combine the use of light brooming, and water from a garden hose. DO NOT PRESSURE WASH!

Moss Removal- The length of time that the moss has been on the roof, and the type of roof it is on will determine the method for removal.

If the moss is recent and light use of a moss killer may be required. (There are many types, both chemical and organic) However you may be able to lightly broom the moss off of the roof.

If the moss has embedded itself beyond the point of a simple broom job then a Moss Killing product will be necessary. These products typically work very quickly (Within 1 day) Apply the product according to manufacturer’s recommendations, wait for the moss to discolor and die, then remove with non abrasive broom.

Note: If roof has been neglected moss can take roof granules with it. This will cause your shingles to fail rapidly. If this is the case it is recommended to contact a professional immediately.

Algae Stain Removal- There are a multitude of Algae Removal products out there. The two predominant versions are either Bleach based, or Biodegradable. The bleach based products will perform faster, as the biodegradable may take more applications. (Call for list of products)
Either way the application is similar. Mix in a garden sprayer. Spray area affected, and rinse after a short period of time.

If in the spring and fall you are able to clean debris off of your roof, and treat the roof with a liquid algae cleaner moss should not be an issue for you, and your roof will look bright and new!

To extend your roof’s lifespan, ensure regular inspections, promptly repair any damage, keep gutters clean and functional, remove debris, and consider periodic professional cleaning to prevent the growth of moss and algae.

Short answer…. No. Zinc is a fungicide, and does kill algae which can reduce moss growth. However, you are relying on rain to wash over the strip carrying zinc oxide from the strip down the roof. Experience has shown that the effectiveness of the strip is 3-4 feet down from where the strip is installed (Typically at the peak of the roof). Experience also tells us that the strips wear out after a couple of years.

Other drawbacks are that when they are on the roof they are noticeable, and they have a tendency to break and flop around on the roof.

Copper wire is less effective based on the size of the wire typically used. However, many asphalt roofing shingles have Copper Granules embedded in them. These have proven to be effective in the prevention of Algae Staining for periods of 10-15 years. These work because they are evenly spread throughout the roof providing constant and consistent protection. For more information contact our office: 877-926-9966

While some homeowners may opt to clean their roofs themselves, hiring professionals is recommended. Professional cleaners have the necessary equipment, experience, and safety measures in place to clean your roof efficiently and safely.