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A Guide To Cleaning Your Roof

Over time, harsh weather, debris and moss can cause your roof to become dirty. Although this might not seem like a huge problem aesthetically, it can cause damage to the roof and larger problems in the future. It’s vital that you remember that, above all else, your roof needs to be functional.

What’s more, as moss and algae grow and spread, they can hold water on the surface of your roof, which can weaken its structure. And if you have clay tiles, moss and algae can slowly delaminate these, causing them to become weak and dull.

It’s also important to watch your roofline, as drainpipes and guttering can easily become blocked with dirt and debris. Therefore, you need to clean these out too.

In this guide, we’re going to teach you how to take care of your property. We’ll look at tips for cleaning and maintaining your roof, as well as when you might want to call the professionals.

Can I clean my own roof?

You might be wondering whether you should attempt to clean your own roof rather than hiring in a professional to do it for you. The answer is you can absolutely clean your own roof, providing you consider the risks and do everything right to keep yourself safe. You also need to make sure you don’t do anything that will potentially damage your roof, but we’ll look at this in more detail later.

If, however, cleaning your roof is going to be far too time-consuming and possibly risky for you, then you might wish to pay someone to do this instead. The choice is yours.

Should you use a pressure washer?

Often, our initial reaction to washing away dirt and debris outdoors is to use a pressure washer. However, we advise against using a pressure washer when it comes to your roof, as this can damage the surface, even when done by a professional. That’s because this technique is very abrasive, and while it will remove dirt and moss, it can also displace tiles or shingle.

What you need to clean the roof

There are several things you’ll need to maintain your roof and clean it when dirt and debris do build up. The most common equipment includes:

  • A safe and secure ladder
  • A soft bristle brush
  • A hose
  • A bucket
  • Protective clothing such as gardening gloves and non-slip shoes
  • Specialist chemicals for moss removal – optional
  • A sprayer – for chemical application
  • A gutter scoop – optional

You might not need all of these depending on what you’re doing and the current state of your roof, but it’s always helpful to have everything you need readily available, just in case.

Remove the moss

First and foremost, you should keep an eye on moss growth and try to tackle the problem as soon as you notice it rather than letting it get too bad. However, if the damage is done, you have two options.

You can use chemicals or solutions to kill off the moss without damaging the roof. If you choose this option, be sure to use the right measurements and get access to a sprayer for even distribution.

Alternatively, you might wish to use a technique called soft brushing, in which you scrape and brush the moss away very carefully with your brush. This might be best done before or after chemical applications to make it easier to remove.

Clean away dirt and debris

Following on from this, it’s important that you frequently check your roof and remove any dirt or debris as it builds. Again, you can use soft brushing to do this, or you can use your hose to gently wet and remove dirt if it has already built up. You might need to get back up with your broom to give it a gentle scrub but just avoid having the pressure on your hose too high.

Pay attention to the guttering

As we said, keeping your roof functional is not just about cleaning your roof tiles. You also need to pay attention to your guttering which can quickly become clogged with leaves and debris, especially in autumn.

Using your ladder and gutter scoop, you should regularly check and clean out your guttering. This will stop the build-up, which in turn will stop water pooling up and damaging your roof.

Call in the professionals

Finally, if you’re unsure about cleaning your roof yourself, or if it needs quite a lot of work, then it might be best to call in the professionals. They will be able to do a proper job and take all of the risks out of cleaning your roof yourself.

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