Chicago Roof Repair
Staining, algae, and mold can make your roof unsightly, even when it’s all but brand new. Fortunately, you can restore it to its sparkling status in little more than an afternoon. Regular stain removal can extend the life of your roof as well as improving its function and aesthetic. All you’ll need is a few basic tools and a little elbow grease to keep your roof looking as good as new for years to come. Of course, you can always pay professional roofers to do this job for you, which is never a bad option, but if you would prefer to do it yourself, read on to find out exactly how to do a good job of it.
Step 1: Choose the Proper Chemicals
Some shingles are treated with a powerful algaecide that will keep algae at bay and off your roof for about 10 years. After that 10 years is up, however, the limestone and other elements in your roof’s shingles become like an all you can eat buffet for algae colonies and other types of bacteria. And if your shingles were never treated with algaecide, the neon light for that buffet has been flashing since day one. So, when you want to close down the free lunch, you’ll need to choose a chemical powerful enough to get the job done and keep algae away for a reasonable length of time.
First, we’ll start off with what not to use. Many sites on the internet will advocate using a few gallons of bleach and a low-powered pressure washer for the job, but there are several problems with this approach. One, even a low powered pressure washer has the ability to damage and loosen shingles from your roof if you’re not careful, so why take the chance? Two, bleach can corrode metal flashing on your roof, lighten the colors of your roofing material, harm plants in the area of the runoff, and it doesn’t even work that well at getting to the root of the algae problem. At best, it will kill off the top layer of the algae and lighten the stains a bit. Lye based products like Defy roof cleaner are much more effective, environmentally friendly options, but they will need to be used with care.
Step 2: Prepare the Area
Before you climb up on the roof and get down to it, you need to prepare the surrounding area for what’s about to come. Ensure that your gutters and downspouts are unblocked and free of debris to allow the runoff to drain freely. Repair any loose shingles or flashing that may be evident on your roof. Move lawn furniture and plants out of the way of the spray and cover any nearby vegetation to protect it.
Step 3: Spray Away
Now, you’re ready to begin the cleaning process. Saturate large areas of shingles starting at the bottom and working your way to the peak of the roof. Spray until you see the cleaning product starting to runoff, then respray any areas that may have dried. Let it soak in and then rinse to remove dead algae and other debris.