In order for moss to thrive, it needs to be provided with a damp environment, which is why it tends to be most commonly found in forests, swamps, and other wet areas, where moisture builds and cannot escape. And while there’s no denying how attractive certain types of moss can be, it’s always an unwelcome sight when it begins to accumulate on your roof.
Though a highly common problem, roof moss should be addressed with a sense of urgency. Whichever roof moss treatment method you decide on, it’s a good idea to get to work on it as quickly as possible. It will need to be killed and removed, before preventative steps can be taken to ensure it doesn’t make a comeback.
In this article, we’ll be briefly touching upon all three of these moss removal stages.
Why Roof Moss Should Be Removed
Even if it adds a welcome aesthetic lift to your home, roof moss can cause serious damage. The most common problem associated with moss is the very slow but continuous lifting of the roof shingles, which happens when moss creeps under the shingles and continues its expansion. When this occurs, the roof (in whole or in part) is no longer able to provide full protection from the elements.
Rain finds its way into the woodwork of your roof and eventually leads to rot. In addition, a strong gust of wind could easily catch the lifted shingles and tear them straight off the roof. Over time, moss can also directly begin breaking down the integrity of the shingles themselves, reducing their ability to protect your home.
Killing Roof Moss
On the plus side, roof moss treatment can be approached in a number of ways and can usually be addressed successfully, if caught early enough. The severity of the problem will determine which approach suits your needs best, though it’s always worth starting with the simplest methods and moving on from there.
The Big Brush-Off
For example, if you’re only just starting to notice a moss problem and there isn’t a lot of it to deal with, you might get away with simply brushing it off. This involves taking a standard sweeping brush with relatively stiff bristles and using it to dislodge the moss, before brushing it away. The bonus of this approach being that it requires no specialist tools and is much safer than clambering onto your roof for a more hands-on attack. If successful, complete the job by applying a high-quality moss remover soap to get rid of any remaining areas of stubborn moss.
There are plenty of liquid concentrate moss treatments available right now that work a treat on most roofs. In this instance, the benefit of stocking up on a quality concentrate is that it can also be used to remove moss on driveways, patios, and other external areas. Made with a cocktail of interesting ingredients, they have a powerful effect which not only kills the moss, but can keep your roof protected for up to 12-months. After using a liquid product to kill the moss, grab a sweeping brush to get rid of it.
The DIY Remedy
If store-bought chemicals aren’t your thing, there’s a pretty effective home remedy for moss that’s more than worth trying out. All you’ll need is plenty of very hot water and a good dose of sea salt. Take this hot saline solution, spray it all over the moss using a pump bottle and give it a good half hour or so. After this, brush away the dead moss and apply a second dose of the salt water and repeating the process for any areas that aren’t completely clean.
When it comes to preventing future moss buildup, we generally recommend investing in a simple zinc strip. When attached to the roof right at the top, any rainwater that hits it contributes to the creation of alkaline conditions as it runs down the shingles. This in turn makes it a wholly inhospitable environment for moss to grow. There are also various products containing zinc sulphate, which can be applied directly to the roof.
Commercial Weed Killer
A popular option but one that should be approached with caution. Weed killers certainly have the power to kill moss, but you need to think carefully about what exactly you’re spraying all over your home. Not to mention, what happen when the rain carries it off the roof into your garden and outside living spaces. If you do intend to use weed killer, look for something as safe and eco-friendly as possible.
Last but not least, it’s always worth considering stepping up to higher-quality shingles – many of which are now manufactured to prevent moss building. It’s a solution on the extreme end of scale, admittedly. But if you’re finding yourself dealing with troublesome moss time and time again, high-quality shingles could be an ideal solution.
If you still have questions, give us a call at 503-407-3346 or click here for more information.