Too often, cleaning the outside of the actual house is overlooked until it’s overrun with gunk, mold, and embedded dirt from years back. With materials like vinyl siding, a quick once-over can restore luster with no permanent damage from the settled dirt being done. There’s an area of the house though that almost never gets cleaned unless it’s hit in a heavy downpour – the roof. The reasons why the roof rarely gets cleaned are simple; it’s hard to access, nobody ever sees it, and what’s the worst that could happen anyway? The truth is it’s very important to get on the roof and survey the area, and the reasons go well beyond keeping it clean.
To Save Your Shingles
Shade trees are a nice addition to any property but unfortunately when they’re planted too close to the house, they harvest the growth of mold and algae on your shingles. This spore like feeding on the composites of shingles anyway and providing them with a cool location that doesn’t dry after it rains is like creating a Sandals Resort for them. Eventually they eat apart and disintegrate the shingles causing them to peel up and break apart. Cutting down the shade tree shouldn’t be a choice so instead get your roof cleaned and treated so the algae is kicked out of their vacation home permanently.
To Help Your Utility Bills
Another type of mold and allergen that grows on the roof is the always attractive and ominous sounding black algae (Gloeocapsa Magma). This black growth not only looks unsightly to passers-by it also feeds and expands until it creates almost an impervious surface. The sun obviously is absorbed by this black algae which then makes cooling the home that much harder. Whatever is spent in roof cleaning could basically be considered a wash from lower utility bills.
To Be Healthy
Spores on the shingles and roof might seem harmless but the presence of them is anything but. If left untreated they’ll eventually seep their way into the attic, down the walls, into the duct work of the house, and basically to anywhere they see fit. Plus the presence of algae and mold on the shingles just makes any other moisture trap around the house that much more susceptible. Soon eyes will be watering, residents will have headaches, and guests will leave within minutes (not always a bad thing) just because a homeowner allowed mold to fester on their roof.
To Stay Insured
While you might receive some rolled eyes from neighbors who see the mold loft growing on your shingles, they are for the most part harmless. Not the case when your insurance company drives by to do a random audit and sees the majority of a roof that has become an algae playground. The insurance company rightfully assumes that the spores have invaded other parts of the home and might find it in their best interest to cancel your policy before the mold infestation is too much of a liability. Then good luck getting a reasonable rate from the next adjuster that comes by to peruse your house for a new policy.
So Your Home Can Sell (Someday)
One reason you may be putting off getting your roof cleaned professionally is because you’re going to be selling soon anyway. The truth is any inspector that notices extensive mold damage on the shingles is going to give his or her client the benefit of the doubt and say the whole roof needs to be replaced, knocking thousands of dollars of your sale price whereas it only would’ve cost a couple hundred to have it cleaned and treated.
To Keep Gutters Clean
It’s not just mold spores that can enter the house when it’s allowed to run ransack on your roof. In fact when the problem gets too bad the mold will eventually start to bog up and cause shingles to rot away which might end up clogging your gutters. Clogged gutters don’t allow water to run off where it’s supposed to and it instead overflows down the side of the house near the foundation. Soon the foundation is commandeered and the water enters your basement, destroying a priceless baseball card collection and opening up the pool and spa for mold and mildew to grow once again.
To Keep Your Roof Accessible
While algae formation might be unsightly and damaging, it’s also very slippery. This causes a huge problem if a homeowner wants to climb onto their roof and adjust a satellite dish or clean out gutters to protect their baseball card collection. Roofs are hard enough to scale as-is but a misstep on an algae filled roof could be catastrophic.
When a roof is cleaned professionally it’s not just for aesthetic reasons, it’s treated so that mildew is less likely to return in the future. Service technicians use special cleaning formulas and tools that are both safe for them but also so they don’t tear up your roof. Looking at the potential damage that could be cause by simply doing nothing, having a roof cleaned every couple years really is a no-brainer.
Photos by JAHLUKA,
Photos by JAHLUKA,
Photo by JAHLUKA