Thinking Of Pressure Washing Your Roof? 4 Things To Know Before You Do

Roof algae is an annoying organism--one that cause ugly black streaks to stand out on your roof seemingly overnight. To combat algae, as well as moss and lichens, many people choose to pressure wash their roof. Yet, before you succumb to this temptation, it's important to know a few things. This article will provide four invaluable tips for the next time you decide to pressure wash your roof.

Wear proper foot gear.

When pressure washing a roof, as with any roofing project, safety should be your first concern. Not only are roofs steep and somewhat treacherous, but yours is going to be wet as well. Thus it is wise to wear shoes or boots specifically designed for working on a roof. These will have tough, high-traction soles to provide the maximum amount of grip.

Make sure you have an appropriate tip on your spray wand.

It's easy to underestimate the damaging power of a pressure washer. Likewise, the shingles on your roof are more delicate than you might think. To help safely distribute the pressure of your washer, it is advisable to attach a wide-angled spray tip before you begin. This will minimize the chances of knocking shingles loose, or stripping away the granules on their surface. Make sure that your spray wand's tip is at least 35 degrees wide.

Don't bring the spray tip too close to the shingles.

Another way your roof can become inadvertently damaged is by holding the spray wand too close to the surface. This will expose your shingles to too great a pressure, thus knocking loose granules. As a result, the shingles will be more susceptible to the damaging powers of rain, hail, and sun. Try to maintain a constant distance of no less than one foot at all times.

Start from the top and always aim the washer downward.

Pressure washing upward can cause all sorts of problems. For one thing, it's much easier to knock shingles loose that way. If the force of the pressure washer is strong enough, it can bend a shingle backwards. Fresh new shingles may be able to withstand this force, but older shingles are liable to snap, crack, or become dislodged. That means more hours spent performing tedious repairs.  

Aiming your pressure wand up-roof also allows water to force its way in beneath the bottom of your shingles. When the roof decking below gets wet, all sorts of problems can ensue--from attic leaks, to mold and mildew, to wood rot. Starting from the peak of your roof and working downward will allow you to avoid all of these unwanted problems.

If cleaning your roof sounds like too demanding of a task, consider hiring a company like Ray's Harford Home Improvement Contractors Inc to do so for you. You're always better safe than sorry when it comes to your roof and your safety.