Here in Texas, most roofs are asphalt shingles. Soft washing, also known as low pressure washing is used for roof cleaning. No (High) pressure washing here. Soft washing will get the chemicals into all needed areas of the roof and allow the chemicals to do their job. Soft washing is a must as is careful scrubbing, if needed, to prevent loosening of the mineral granules from the shingles. Your roof protects your home from the elements and needs care just like the rest of your home. Black mold and harmful bacteria can grow and eat away at shingles, eventually damaging the roof.
According to a recent article in The American window Cleaning magazine, “Roofing shingles typically consist of three parts: fiberglass sheets, petroleum adhesive, and ceramic or stone aggregate. The most important portion of the roofing shingle is the aggregate, which protects the rest of the system from degradation caused by both weather and UV rays.
Over the past 30 years, shingle manufacturers have significantly reduced the amount of asphalt in shingles, adding other ingredients instead, such as limestone. Gloeocapsa Magma feast on limestone, which is why roof algae has become such a widespread problem. Left untreated, the algae literally eats away at the roof until the only option left is roof replacement, which typically costs several thousands of dollars.
Additionally, shingle granules are designed to help deflect UV rays and heat away from the roof’s surface. When the granules have deteriorated or are covered in algae, the attic get hotter and electric bills rise.”
What’s the Solution?
“The good news is that in many cases, a good cleaning using the proper techniques can eliminate the algae, prolong the roof’s life, and potentially lower electric bills. The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA) recommends that shingles be cleaned using non-pressure, chemical methods. Using too high of pressure may remove the algae, but it can also remove granules from the shingles, which again will degrade the roof’s lifespan. In fact, using high pressure often voids any roofing manufacturer’s warranty.
Finally, in addition to killing the destructive algae from roofs, a clean roof is much more attractive than a dirty roof. A clean roof instantly increases a home’s curb appeal, and in turn, is one of the most cost-effective improvements a home or building owner can make.”
So, after clearing away any roof debris, soft washing with proper equipment and using appropriate chemicals will kill harmful bacteria and clean your roof of mold without damage to the shingles. After the application of cleaning products, the roof is left to dry, then rinsed with clean water. If mold or algae is heavily imbedded in your shingles, a gentle scrubbing should do the job, being careful not to loosen the mineral granules on the shingles. After the roof dries and has been rinsed. if needed, the soft washing process is repeated. The last step in the cleaning process is a thorough rinsing .
Plants and shrubs near the work site can be protected from chemicals dripping off the roof by being treated with a special liquid protectant or, watered and covered with a tarp.
Anyone doing this job must be safety conscious for all concerned at all times. Safety equipment will be used 100% of the time.