11 Most FAQ's About Roof Cleaning

As a home owner, you are aware that your home is probably your largest investment and that taking care of it is an important and necessity in maintaining it's value. Unlike the inside of your home, the exterior is exposed for all to see, and it can reflect heavily on your image. 

Maintaining great curb appeal is pretty high up on the maintenance budget. Lawn care services, landscape maintenance, painting projects, and exterior cleaning are all definite home improvements that give you the best bang for your buck. There is nothing that screams curb appeal more than a good house cleaning, fresh mulch, trimmed shrubbery and a thick green lawn.

One of the biggest eye sores and curb appeal killers is roof mold and fungus. Roof mold appears as black stains or streaks on your roof's shingles. It can really take away from the beauty of an otherwise gorgeous home. So what can be done about these unsightly black streaks? We will answer this question and some of the other most frequently asked questions about roof cleaning.

Q: Can this roof algae be removed?

A: The good news is YES!. A No-Pressure Roof cleaning service is offered by ALL-PRO. The roof algae can be killed and removed safely without the use of a pressure washer, this method will  restore your roof's appearance and your shingles..

Q: Will cleaning my roof damage the shingles?

A: When the wrong methods are used, the answer is YES!. Inexperienced contractors or home owners can easily damage shingles by removing excessive amounts of shingle granules otherwise called (aggregate), which are there to protect the shingles. The main culprit of roof cleaning damage is using too much water pressure to blast the shingles clean. Never allow a pressure washer to be used on your roof or any other aggressive method! 

Q: So, how can the shingles be cleaned without causing damage?

A: By using the No-pressure methods recommended by the shingle manufacturers themselves. The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association, GAF, and Owens Corning have all suggested cleaning methods and solutions to clean roofs suffering from roof algae. They recommend using a No-pressure chemical application.

Q: What is the solution that should be used on my shingles?

A: The proper cleaning solution that is recommended by ARMA, GAF, and Owens Corning is a Bleach based solution with Copper Oxide and Zinc Phosphate, also we have incorporated a release agent into the mix which attacks the fungus directly at the root so it comes off easier and faster. Generally we can clean a roof faster with a garden hose than someone can with a pressure washer, keeping your cost down. This type of cleaner is effective in killing the algae and keeping your roof clean for around 5 Years.  After this commercial grade detergent algae cide is applied to your roof a No-pressure rinse is generally needed which is done with the use of a garden hose and pin point nozzel. Max Pressure 85 psi. Most pressure washer start at 500 Psi and go up from there, which is just to much pressure for your roof to handle.

Q: Do some of the other lye or sodium hydroxide-based roof cleaners work well?

A: Unfortunately, they do not. The shingle manufacturers do not recommend these products because they are not very effective. They only work when used in conjunction with excessive pressure from a pressure washer, which leads to lessened longevity of the roof. When not used with pressure, some of these products even state on the label that the roof may take 2-3 months to begin appearing clean after an application, and in some cases more than one application is necessary.

Q: Will a Bleach-based solution harm my landscaping?

A: It can when handled improperly; after all, roof algae are plants. You've probably used bleach before when doing laundry, right? Would you give the same gallon jug of bleach to a 4 year-old and tell them to do the whites with it? Of course you wouldn't! because in the wrong hands it can be harmful either to them or your clothes. Well, it's the same thing with roof cleaning. This is why it is important to let a roof cleaning professional clean the roof for you. They will know how to handle the cleaner to protect themselves and your property from damage.

Q: How long will my roof stay clean?

A: There are some biocides and sealers on the market that claim to keep the algae away for good, but the test results are very limited so no one really knows. The best thing to do after getting your roof cleaned is to have your roof sprayed. For a fraction of the original cost they will come out and give your roof a maintenance coat so the algae doesn't return.

Q: When I do get a new roof, are algae-resistant shingles effective?

A: Well, they call them algae-resistant (not algae-proof) for one simple reason; they help in eradicating the roof algae problem but they aren't a full proof answer (not yet anyway). As a roof cleaning contractor, I have seen algae-resistant shingles suffering from roof algae, so a No-pressure roof
cleaning was still necessary. If a company is advertiseing, " A clean it once and protect it forever" service. Chances are they want you to sign a service contract that you can NOT get out of. BEWARE  there is nothing out there that we have seen in our 20 years experience that you can spray on a roof that will stop future growth forever. (NOTHING!) 

Q: When is the best time to have my ROOF Cleaned?

A: First and for most you should have your roof cleaned at the first site of black mold streaks or fungus growth, Unfortunately most people think it will go away on it's own so they wait untill their roof is a mess and then it usually cost more to have it cleaned. However in the southern regions of the country where the weather is warm year round such as ( Florida, Georgia and the Carolina's)  Roof Cleaning is a year round business. In the northern area's such as ( Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Connecticut ) Roof Cleaning is a seasonal Business which can only be done when the weather is 50 degree's or up, Reason being is that the mold & Fungus goes into it's dormat stage when the weather drops below 50 degree's, as you well know when fungus is in it's dormant stage it will not drink therefore you can not kill it. 


Q: What should I expect to pay for a ROOF Cleaning?

A: It really all depends on how much fungus you have on your roof. As a general rule of thumb, a person can expect to pay thousands of dollars to replace their roof and hundreds to clean it, and the cleaning should last around 3 to 5 Years. It's really a no brain'er!

Q: What are some good tips in choosing a good roof cleaning contractor ?


A. FIRST and FOREMOST, ROOF CLEANING is relatively new to the New England area. Most roof cleaning companies can NOT get Insurance, because most Insurance companies do NOT have a classification code for roof cleaning.( ALL-PRO Inc. Is BONDED & INSURED). and will furnish you with the proper documentation upon request.

 Beware of companies that offer other services beside roof cleaning such as handy man, painting Etc. These companies state they have insurance but it may not cover roof cleaning, 
 Hire a company that is BONDED & INSURED and ask to see their certificates. Companies that do not use pressure washers do NOT need to be LICENSED.

    when hiring a contractor keep this in mind. Roof cleaners in RI that don't use a PRESSURE WASHER are not required by Law to have a license or insurance. However being Bonded is something you should look for in the company you choose. If they use a pressure washer then they are required to have a license & Insurance but Beware, if they use a pressure washer there is a very good chance they could ruin your roof or break your shingles. A company with the most years of experience is usually your best bet. They are established and they will offer you a warranty, and you can count on them being around in the future. In 2003 ALL-PRO was the first company to bring roof cleaning to the New England area. If anyone tells you or states differently, they are liar's and you probably should NOT hire them!


DON'T HIRE! A Contractor: who has A dirty or disorganized truck. Appearance is everything, Take a good look at their vehicle when they pull up to your home, usually if their truck is clean and organized they know the importance of valuing their own property and will do the same to your's. Hiring a handyman who offers many different types of home improvements such as painting, carpentry and renovations is probably not your best bet. If they were any good at what they do they would focus on one particular service and wouldn't have the need to offer roof cleaning too. which means their not really good at whatever they do, nor are they very busy. Your roof cost you a lot of money don't chances it to a "jack of all trades master of NONE!". Also companies that offer a wet and forget are just as good as a spray and pray service, your paying for a service you shouldn't have to wait or hope it cleans up, you should have instant results.


DON'T HIRE! A Contractor: who has a been arrested or has a record, they are not very responsible people. Do your Homework first check them out.  


Remember anyone can pressure wash a ROOF!  if you want your roof  pressure washed you shouldn't pay more than $200.00 no matter what the size of the roof,  after all, your going to have to replace it very soon thereafter!  There are only a few companies who will take the time to do it right. A good roof cleaning company will advertise a NO-PRESSURE ROOF CLEANING SERVICE. If they don't! then bank on them using a pressure washer.  

Beware: If a company advertises being in business for 50 years or more and is offering roof cleaning as a service, this does not mean they have been cleaning roofs for 50 years. 50 years ago roof cleaning was not needed. Also hiring a roofer to clean your roof may not be such a good idea, most roofing companies that offer a roof cleaning service have an ulterior motive. They want to get their foot on your property to talk you into replacing your roof. after all that's how they make a living. Just think about this, roof cleaning has been around since 1985 and yet not one roofer has ever stated that you could clean your roof, until now when there is a company in your area who specializes in roof cleaning, and that's (ALL-PRO Inc.) we make a living by cleaning your roof and extending the life of it, so we have no ulterior motive.

The Worst Thing you Can Do; HIRING SOMEONE WHO MARKETS THEIR COMPANY ON A TELEPHONE POLE, THAT SHOULD TELL YOU HOW MUCH CONFIDENCE THEY HAVE IN THEIR COMPANY LET ALONE THEMSELVES! 
​    We Have Received a lot of emails & complaints about a company that advertises on telephone poles. The signs have NO-Name just a number and a brief description of
    what they do.(Roof Moss removal,) and apparently now they are offering some kind of Painting service as well. Most of the customer complaints are about the company doing         such a terrible job, and stating that they will give them a warranty and they never receive one.Also a company that has magnetic signs on their truck, Beware they can easily be       removed and the company can be out of business without a trace of ever being in business. These types of Companies are usually the ones that ruin the industries they try to           represent and leave bad impressions in customers minds.


February 27, 2003
Contact:  Web Moderator
Info: Sponsored by the Homeowners Association of Rhode Island & Massachusetts 


2003 From ALL-PRO No-Pressure ROOF & EXTERIOR Cleaning Service, all rights reserved.
What is that on my Roof?
MOSS
Water on the roof helps aid growth!
Although Moss does not damage your shingles as severely as other growth it is a very unsightly topical growth which collects dirt, debris and other growths that land on the roof, some take root. 

Also Moss and other growths can trap water and ice promoting Ice Dams and other concerns in the winter months. 

Trapped water and snow will keep your roof from functioning properly reducing the life of your Roof! 
Lichen(Li'Kin)
​*Lichen which is a commonly found on tree trunks has a very strong root system which feeds on Limestone. Limestone is the base product of you shingles that provides a food source for growth, as growth feeds on the Limestone it loosens up the aggregate(little Stones) on your shingles and they fall out, thus leaving you with premature aggregate loss reducing the life of your Roof.
Lichen growth will cause sever damage to you Roof!
Algae
Algae growth causes a dark discoloration on roofs. The algae is usually brown to black in color which results in a streaked, dirty looking rooftop. It can be mistaken for soot, dirt or tree droppings, which typically produce only localized discoloration. 
It's caused by the growth of air-borne algae which deposits on your roof. 

Growth starts out as a spore then lands on your roof, It then recognizes the limestone in your shingles, seeds itself, germinates and then blooms. As it blooms it spews off more spores and the process goes on and on.

The good news is that algae growth can be removed with a simple process to save the life of your roofing material. 
Algae & Fungus growth occurs most often in warm, humid climates such as the shady north and east facing areas of your roof. 
left alone it will eat right through your shingles like termites eat through the wood in your home!
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