Algae Resistant Shingles: An effective way of moss and algae control.

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Many homeowners have had their roof fall victim to unsightly algae and moss . This is a common occurrence in areas that experience high levels of humidity. Aside from high humidity, algae can also be carried to your roof through airborne spores. Seattle is located in the national danger zone for roof moss and lichen. Fortunately, today’s homeowner has the option to choose algae resistant shingles, also known as AR shingles, to avoid this problem.


The History of Algae Resistant Shingles

Algae resistant shingles date back to the 1980’s when roofing materials were produced that contained alternative kinds of mineral granules, such as:

  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Galvanized Metal Powder

When AR shingles were first produced in the 1980’s, they were considered to be a premium option in roofing materials. By the 1990’s, algae resistance became a standard option and was available in most brands of shingles.

How Do Algae Resistant Shingles Work?

AR shingles work by using copper that is included in the roofing granules that make up the shingles. The copper is not noticeable to the eye; however, it will keep algae from being able to survive on the surface of your roof. The copper or zinc materials found in AR roofing materials also respond to rain which activate the algae fighting action. Moisture generally works to help promote the growth of algae, but with these special shingles, it helps to further protect the roof.

AR shingles tend to be more expensive initially, but when considering the cost of having to have the algae removed from your roof on a yearly basis, they are well worth the initial investment and will help to protect your roof for many years to come.

How Effective Are Algae Resistant Shingles?

Some brands of algae resistant shingles can help keep your roof free from unwanted moss and algae for up to 20 years. Products containing copper have been reported to be ten times more effective than zinc at keeping algae at bay. The copper is generally time released and will work to resist algae and moss build-up over a long period of time.

It is also important to note that adding some type of copper ridge or hip shingle containing copper will not work on an existing roof system that already has live algae or moss present. It will not kill the algae, but rather works to provide resistance to it before it starts.

No one wants to think of fungus taking over their roof, causing damage as well as ugly staining. In choosing algae resistant products when replacing a roof, you may be spending more money upfront, but for the protection and peace of mind that comes with it, it’s worth it.

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Black Streaks on Roof

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Chemical Cleaning to Remove Black Streaking from Roofing

Gloeocapsa Magma is the scientific name for those black streaks on your roofing. Gloeocapsa is a form of algae that lives in wet humid climates. These streaks of black are not as evident in the Seattle-Tacoma region due to the majority of roofing material being of dark coloring. If your roofing substrate is light colored, it’s very probable that these stains will be found on your home.

Although, Gloeocapsa Magma is not harmful to roofing, the appearance of a home suffers tremendously. When selling a home the algae stains should be an issue that is dealt with before the home is placed up on the market. These stains are a red flag to potential home owners who may not know exactly what that black stuff is and whether or not it’s harmful to the roofing.

Soft wash roof cleaning with chemicals is a superior method of removing Gloeocapsa. This method of roof cleaning gets rid of these unsightly black streaks while keeping the integrity of the roofing intact. Power washing is not as effective at eliminating Gloeocapsa. It is also very damaging to roofing shingles. Read more here………….

In the picture to the left, a chemical solution is sprayed on the roof. Each chemical in the mix does a certain job. Within 25 minutes, the picture to the right shows the roof stains are almost completely gone. The mix continues to work on the stains and streaks until the next day of rain. After the roofs first shower, the roof is looking its best.

Going from being a white roof covered in black to being a white roof again has strong selling value for a home. Soft Washing is a great way to safely and effectively remove black streaks from your roof in Seattle. Whether your home is up on the market or you just don’t like coming home to a dirty roof, consider chemical cleaning when hiring a roof cleaning contractor.


 

How to Kill Moss on Roof

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Lichen –that green stuff you call moss growing on your roof is a fungus.  Everyone knows that treating fungus is only done with some type of medication; it just doesn’t go away on its own.  What you take for your body is real similar to what needs to happen for cleaning roofs.

Using a pressure washer on your roof is tantamount to scratching an infection and spreading it around. Without treatment these spores are now where they started from to covering your entire roof. Water propels these spores and sends them streaming and breeding along your roof line without the proper treatment after a cleaning you’re left with a bigger problem then what you started with.

An effective chemical to treat any type of moss is sodium hypochlorite at a high percentage. You can’t just go in and buy bleach at the store and spread it around as the percentage of bleach on store shelves is too low in quantity per gallon and too expensive on your pocket-book to actually do its job. On average a roof needs 35-40 gallons of roof cleaning mixture to cover and kill moss on your roof.

The effect is minimal when sodium hypochlorite isn’t given an effective herbicide (penicillin for plants) to help it last longer and kill those spores that are left, from returning.

When you decide to hire your contractor, the type of chemical he uses will give you a good idea on when you’ll have to hire him again. MOSSBEWARE and MOSSOUT are the 2 biggest retail moss killers out there. Sure they do their job but the effects only last for about 60 days before the stuff is back. On average our mixture lasts 2-3 years.