Spring Roof Clean-Up Tips

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As the snow begins to melt in many parts of the country, now is the time to clean up for spring. Winter weather can be a shingle’s enemy (especially in areas that had to deal with so many storms), so it’s important for contractors to reach out to homeowners to help them with their roof’s spring-cleaning and inspection. Not only will this make a home look better, it can also extend the life of the roof. Here are some tips to share with your customers on what to look for during spring cleaning. 

Tree limbs. Make sure tree limbs don’t touch a roof.  If they do, they can easily scrape over the shingles and loosen the protective granules. This will severely reduce the life of a roof. Trim trees close to the house to avoid any limbs touching the roof surface.

Leaves and pine needles. A little leaf or a few pine needles are fine, but if they collect and are deep enough to hold moisture, they need to be taken off the roof.  Anything that traps moisture will cause mildew to form, block gutters, or cause extra weight on the roof. A rake or air blower can be used to clear the roof, but take care not to damage the shingles.

Moss. Cutting back trees and removing leaves will reduce moss growth, as it will allow sunlight to dry up the moisture that moss thrives on. While there are chemicals available on the market to get rid of moss, the runoff can cause damage to plants. Another solution is to nail zinc or copper strips to the ridgeline; as rain washes across, it creates an environment where moss cannot grow.

Mold. Discolored streaks on a roof indicate there is mold, algae, or fungus, which can eat away at the roofing material and, ultimately, cause leaks. A treatment of chlorine bleach or copper sulfate solution applied with a garden sprayer can kill the mold. GAF manufactures algae-resistant shingles that have a specially formulated granule that inhibits algae growth, in addition to shingles with StainGuard® Protection. Finally, do not power wash shingles! It can dislodge granules and cause premature shingle failure.

Gutter damage. Heavy snow from the winter season can result in gutter damage while leftover fall leaves and debris can lead to clogged gutters. Before the springtime rain, check to make sure water can flow easily through the gutters and fix any loose nails that are preventing the gutters from sitting tightly along the roof line.

Missing shingles, chimney, and flashing. A complete inspection by a contractor can uncover issues with missing shingles, chimney damage, or flashing around chimneys, vents, or other bends in the roof.

Dealing with these potential issues in a timely manner will allow your roof to stand strong through the next season of weather challenges—and for many years to come.

There are 24 comments

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  1. Daniel

    All of the tips on cleaning your roof are great, just make sure if your a “Do It Yourself” kinda person, there’
    s more than just throwing bleach and water together, the comment about mixing dawn with bleach or Sodium Hypoclorite ( what is used to shock pools) is not so good of an idea, it says not to mix the two together on the bottle of dawn. You need a bleach stable detergent to mix together, this method of cleaning is extremely effective. If anyone is uncertain how to go about cleaning your roof, the industry is quite large filled with educated professionals.

  2. Tim Winston

    Excellent tips here. Thanks! Will definitely be sharing this with homeowners. I personally have recommended GAF’s stain guard shingles many times to people looking for a more permanent solution.

  3. Layla Whitley

    Your blog is excelent. Most customers consider a roof wash, safe and economical. Removal of roof stains is primarily performed to get rid of unsightly roof black algae streaks for aesthetic and cosmetic reasons.

  4. Martin Fuller

    Great article! I would also like to mention that having the roof and gutters prepared for winter in the fall can help prolong the life. When water and mold sit in a clogged gutter, it can attract pests like mosquitoes, flies and stinging wasps. Having gutters thoroughly cleaned in the fall can help prevent ice damage during the winter. When leaves that have fallen into gutters during autumn clog the gutters and are left there, the winter snows can melt off the roof and fill the gutters with ice. It may even lead to having to replace your entire gutter system. Taking measures to clean gutters in the spring and fall can prolong your roof life.

  5. Buckinghamshire Roof Cleaner

    Absolutely great tips! I’m amazed how few people are actually aware of the dangers a dirty roof may pose to their house. Leaks appear, tubes get clogged and they have to pay more for repairs than for cleaning. Cheers and thanks for sharing!

  6. Dave

    I think this tip is a great idea to be informative for the roof in your spring cleaning or pre-summer house check-up for gutter cleaning. It is very common for roof shingles to get loose during heavy storms, making your roof vulnerable to leaks in unexpected manner. While you’re cleaning off gutter or mold, check the shingles for loose or missing slates and replace them quickly.

  7. Global Vac

    You have shared a good idea about the roof cleaning, every homeowner need to inspect and clean their roof before regularly. If anyone is not having time to clean your roof then they can also hire the best roof cleaners in their area to do this job. They know the latest technology and method to clean your roof and make them as new. It saves your time and physical exertion also.

  8. Eli

    I think this is a great idea to include the roof in your spring cleaning or pre-summer house check-up. It is very common for roof shingles to get loose during heavy storms, making your roof vulnerable to leaks. While you’re cleaning off leaves or mold, check the shingles for loose or missing slates and replace them immediately. During a strong wind I could see some slates off of my balcony that were flapping hard in the wind. A couple of nails were all it took to save it from that storm.

  9. Gaston Parizeau

    I probably would not have considered how much damage hanging branches could do to a roof, but it makes sense that they would cause problems over time, as the article explains. We have some trees that hand over our house and I would guess that some of their branches have been rubbing on the roof for several years. I’ll have to inspect the spots where they hang and determine if I’ll need to replace some shingles, or perform other repairs.

  10. Guy Gardener

    Roofing with mold and moss on it looks odd. I didn’t know there was a homemade solution to getting mold off the roof. In fact, I didn’t know there was a way to rid yourself of it without replacing it.

      • pete

        2 gal pool shock / 2 gal of water 8 oz of liquid dawn ( i like the lemon scent ) place it in a back pack sprayer ( do not water your roof, it must be dry ) apply solution. do a section at a time. let it sit 6-8 min then hose it off with water. if you have shrubs best to water them prior putting the solution on and after you rinse the roof off. you want to use the water to dilute so minimal damage to your shrubs.

      • Tom Shrill

        A good solution from pete, lemon smell is indeed really nice! I think that Guy was talking about chlorine bleach or copper sulfate mixed with garden sprayer though. It was the tip given in the article.

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