Moss is pretty on trees not roofs.
Most people do not see moss as an issue. Those that do often think of it only as an eyesore. A very common perception of moss is that it is pretty. People like the idea of their house blending into nature. Others like the magical whimsy of moss linking it to fairytale images of cottages in the woods. No matter what your aesthetic views moss is not meant for roofs.
How does it get there?
Moss grows naturally on every surface but your roof may be more prone to moss if you have a north facing roof. Moss arrives by air-borne spores that typically settle in between shingles. It has a tendency to grow in shady areas but sometimes grows in semi-shade. Large trees that shade houses are potentially influential in moss development. One of the biggest predictors is moisture and humidity. It has rained a lot this year so keep an extra eye out. Moss needs moisture to grow but it can lay dormant in dry seasons. Lastly, moss needs an acidic environment because it likes a pH of 5 to 5.5.
There is a right way and a wrong way to get rid of moss
Once it is decided moss your roof is not an acceptable place for moss, a plan must be made. First of all, it can be prevented from growing in the first place. However, if it is already growing it must be removed. Take note that there is a right way and a wrong way to do this.
As far as prevention goes there are few options. One, you can create an environment that moss will not grow in. You can do this by cutting down trees that shade your roof. Removing pine trees is often helpful as beyond shade the needles dropped to facilitate the lower pH required for moss to grow. If you cannot get rid of shade or do not want to cut down your trees metal strips are an option. Zinc or copper strips can be installed in the flashing near the peak of the roof. When it rains small amounts of the metal dissolve and to kills the moss.
If prevention is now an afterthought and you have moss, take care of how you rid of it. Your roof is an investment and worth safeguarding. There are some things you should definitely not do to remove it.
1. Do not pressure wash the moss off
The high pressure could remove shingle granules reducing their integrity and your roof’s lifespan. Often the pressure is high enough to cause even further damage than this.
2. Take caution with acids.
If an acid mixture is too strong it will not only kill the mold it will also dissolve your shingles. If using acids make sure you have a spare test shingle before you use this method on your whole roof.
3. Scraping it off is not your best option.
Scraping can rip, crack, and break the shingles themselves.
4. Do not spray up.
Spraying at an upward angle can cause water to go under the shingles and leak into the house or rot the wood decking of the roof.
Here is what to do
Ridding your roof of moss
The preventative measures of changing the environment and adding metal to the roof can be used as ways to rid of moss as well. But if you are looking for a faster expulsion changing the pH is usually the way to go. Moss likes a pH of 5 to 5.5. You can lower the pH killing off the moss by sprinkling the moss with either baking soda, baking powder or salt. Mixing a solution of half bleach half water for application is also effective. Raising the pH also kills the moss. You can do this by dosing the moss in vinegar or citrus juice. Moss killing chemicals are also available at your local home and garden center.
Once moss is dead it is very tempting to remove it oneself from the roof instead of letting nature wash it away. Take caution in doing this. If you are going to scrape or spray do not do this at an upward angle or with any great force. It is always best to leave roof restoration to professionals like RJeneration roofers. Professionals know where and how roof damage can occur when removing moss. If you are considering a new roof you could ask them about moss resistant shingles. Whatever you choose do not let the moss settle in. Moss will shorten the lifespan of your roof and could result in both structural and cosmetic repairs. Take action and get rid of that moss today.
Once moss is dead it is very tempting to remove it oneself from the roof instead of letting nature wash it away. Take caution in doing this. If you are going to scrape or spray do not do this at an upward angle or with any great force. It is always best to leave roof restoration to professionals like RJeneration roofers. If you are considering a new roof you could ask them about moss resistant shingles. Whatever you choose do not let the moss settle in. Moss will shorten the lifespan of your roof and could result in both structural and cosmetic repairs. Take action and get rid of that moss today.