How to Clean a Shingle Roof

Feb 13, 2023

How to clean a shingle roof? As a homeowner, you probably know that a clean roof can improve the overall appearance of your home and make it look well-maintained. But did you know that regular roof cleaning also helps extend the lifespan of your shingles and protects against damage? In this blog, we will go over the steps to properly clean a shingle roof and keep it in tip-top shape.

How Do You Clean a Roof?

Trainees and clients often ask this question. There are many ways to clean a shingle roof. Let’s look at the most common and then how to clean asphalt roofing shingles.

Cleaning Asphalt Shingles

According to the manufacturer, asphalt shingles should not be walked on or anything applied to them above the pressure of a common gardening hose (roughly 70 psi). To maintain the roof’s integrity and longevity, it is important to use the correct amount of chemical and low pressure when cleaning asphalt shingles. Low pressure roof cleaning allows you to kill algae but not damage the roof’s structural integrity.

Soft washing is a term used in the industry to describe a process that allows the chemical to clean the roof instead of using high pressure. This is the best and most safest way to clean your roof or asphalt shingles.

Bleach for Roof Shingle Cleaning (Pool Shock)

If you’re thinking of having the algae from your roof removed, hire a professional. They are experienced in using chemicals in high-end landscapes and will treat your home as if they were their own. It is important to take great care when cleaning your roof. There are risks of damaging any landscaping if someone doesn’t fully understand the chemicals and the rinse process.

Once you’ve checked where gutters exits, and confirmed that they aren’t directly into any trees or plants, you can move on to the next step. Chemical ratios.

The most commonly used form of algicide in professional pressure washing is 12.5% sodium hypochlorite (Pool Shock). This section will explain the chemical ratios that you should use to clean roof shingles. These mixtures range in concentration from the most concentrated to the least concentrated. I’ll also explain why you might choose one of them.

  • 75% Sodium hypochlorite – 25% water – This mixture could be used to make hearty algae, firemoss, and lichen.
  • 50% Sodium hypochlorite – 50% water – This mixture can be used to create black streaks, gloeocapsa magma, or light-colored algae.
  • 25% Sodium Hypochlorite – 75% Water – This mixture is not recommended for use on fire moss, or any other hearty alga.

After you have your pool shock, water and garden sprayer mixed, we will climb up to the roof to deliver the goods to the algae. (Ps: If you are unable to climb or afraid of heights, hire a professional for the whole process.)

Step-By-Step Cleaning of a Shingle Roof

Step 1

Protect all Vegetation. Pre soak and direct flow of gutters. Before we start to clean your shingle roof, we need to ensure that all vegetation has been completely pre-soaked with water. This will ensure that all the plant’s cells are fully saturated. Once the cells are saturated the plant will not absorb the chemical through its leaf layer. For extra protection and insurance, you will still need to rinse the plant.

Step 2

Mix your roof cleaning chemicals in your garden sprayer.  For most asphalt shingle roofs use a 50/50 mixture. This will ensure that your chemical is hot enough to produce a desired result.

Step 3

Begin high up on the roof. Then work your way down, applying a coat of “roof cleaner chemical” to each section. To slow down the chemical rundown, some people like to add 1/4 cup of gain green liquid (not the laundry detergent). This allows the active ingredient to stay wetter for longer, allowing it to get to work on the algae that we are trying to eradicate.

Step 4

A fewer chemicals is better. You shouldn’t have chemicals flowing down your roof like a river. 

Step 5

Double treat problem areas. If the algae doesn’t disappear or turns a white color in 5 minutes after applying the first roof cleaning chemical, apply the second coat again. You may have trouble with fire moss or other overgrown moss. This is because it is a more robust version of the gloeocapsa magma (the dark algae). There are two ways to get rid of it. Spray more chemicals until it turns yellow. Or spray another mixture of chemicals until it turns pale and dies. Refer to the above ratio diagram.

Step 6

Re-Soak plants that may have been exposed to mist or a coating of the pool shock mixture. Professionals often skip this step. Unfortunately, it can also cost your landscape. After applying your chemical, re-soak and rinse your plants to ensure that they live long. This is especially important if your plants have been exposed to any previous spraying. This is an extremely important step! Don’t skip this step!

Step 7

You can safely descend from the roof using a ladder. The process will then continue organically. You don’t need to do anything else after applying the chemical. Let the chemical do its job. There is nothing more you can do after applying the chemical. You can check back in a few more weeks to determine if any chemicals need to be reapplied.

Request a Free Estimate

Are you looking to extend the lifespan of your roof and protect your home from damage? Regular roof maintenance is the key! At Roofing Co., we offer comprehensive roof maintenance services to keep your roof in top condition. From cleaning to inspection, our team of certified professionals will make sure that your roof is ready to face any weather or wear and tear. Don’t wait, schedule your roof maintenance today to ensure that your roof is ready for anything.

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No matter what style or type you prefer, Roofing Co. can install any roof for you with great pride and care.

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