Despite its obvious importance, the roof tends to be an area of the home that goes overlooked and ignored. That is, until it becomes so excessively dirty and disheveled that ignoring it is no longer a possibility. Or worse still, your once-pristine roof is now home to a thriving buildup of moss, which over time can eat away at your shingles.
In the case of the latter, ignorance isn’t an option – you need to get it sorted ASAP. On the plus side, shingle moss cleaning is the kind of job that’s perfectly possible to tackle manually. That is, just as long as you know exactly what the job entails before going ahead, in order to avoid doing more harm than good.
Here are the top 6 most common mistakes to avoid while cleaning shingle moss:
1) Pressure Washing
The biggest and most common mistake of all, is shingle moss cleaning by way of pressure washing. While this method can technically get the job done, it can cause more damage than good if not done carefully. While removing the moss, you may end up inadvertently causing serious damage to your shingles or blast them clean off your roof. It’s perfectly fine to use a pressure washer on a seriously gentle setting to rinse a roof when the moss and debris has been loosened and/or removed. However, using it as a tool to actually remove the moss in the first place really isn’t a good idea. For some types of roofs this may be okay, but NOT for shingled roofs.
2) Harmful Chemicals
The same also goes for chemicals. While there are thousands of powerful concoctions that can get the job done, they’ll do so at the expense of your shingles’ health. Not to mention, your own. Chemicals will kill moss on contact and make it easy to remove even the heaviest buildup. However, they can compromise the integrity of your shingles by accelerating corrosion, rot, and decay. In addition, potentially toxic runoff can find its way into your home and your garden, posing a direct threat to the health and safety of people and pets alike. If chemicals of any kinds are to be used to clean moss from roof shingles, they should be chosen under advisement and all instructions followed to the letter.
3) Abrasive Scrubbing
A little elbow-grease might be called for, but it’s important to avoid getting too carried away. To scrub roof tiles too aggressively is to run the risk of damaging the surface, compromising the protection they provide and ultimately accelerating their deterioration. Not only this, but an overly-intensive scrubbing action can also dislodge roof shingles, causing them to come loose or perhaps fall from their position entirely. If you’ve decided to take the hands-on approach to roof shingle moss removal, be sure to use a medium-firm brush and a relatively gentle scrubbing action to minimize damage. If the moss doesn’t come loose easily enough, it clearly needs further treatment before going back to the brush.
4) Not Considering Roof Type
There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all roof cleaning product or approach. With so many different types of roof and a variety of common cleaning duties to carry out, there’s a near-endless range of products on the market for a reason. Choose the wrong product and while you might get rid of the moss, you could also cause serious damage to your roof. From wood to slate to concrete to metal, there are countless purpose-made products available for every type of roof across the board. It’s the same story for the job itself too – some products are made for moss removal, others algae, some general grime build-up and so on. If in any doubt, note the type of roof you have and the job you’re looking to tackle, before seeking advice from an expert.
5) Overlooking Prevention
One of the biggest mistakes any homeowner can make when looking to tackle a moss problem is forgetting to put preventative measures in place at the same time. There’s really no point investing your time, effort, and money in a shingle moss clearance effort, only to then sit back and allow it to return with a vengeance. Given the fact that it’s so simple to minimize the likelihood of recurrence, it makes sense to do exactly that. From purpose-made treatment to zinc strips and more, there are various methods of preventing roof moss from returning – all simple and all affordable.
6) Not Calling the Experts
Last but not least, getting to grips with roof moss cleaning efforts without first giving the professionals could prove to be a mistake. The reason being that after factoring in the costs of the equipment needed, the time required, and your own health and safety, it might work out cheaper and more effective to have the pros do the job on your behalf. And even if you do decide to go it alone, a few tips from the experts beforehand can certainly go a long way.
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