Dirty Roof Myth Busters No.2


Growth of algae, fungus, moss or lichen on roof shingles is an indication of roof decay and time to replace. This is a myth. The presence of any of these organisms on a roof is not an indication of the age or condition of the roof. These organisms are found on roofs that are only a few years old to roofs that are twenty five years old. There’s a phrase in the roof cleaning industry “it’s not old, it’s mold”.

Did you know roughly 50% of all roofs in the Midwest are replaced simply due to their ugly appearance? Most homeowners in the Midwest are not educated yet on roof algae. When a homeowner sees the black streaks and stains they assume the roof needs to be replaced. So they call a roof contractor for an inspection. The contractor claims the roof needs to be replaced and the homeowner needlessly spends thousands of dollars for a new roof. In all fairness to roof contractors many of them, as with homeowners, are not yet educated on roof algae and may honestly believe the roof needs to be replaced. And unfortunately there are some roofing contractors that do realize the roof only needs to be cleaned but will not disclose that to the unsuspecting homeowners.

As long as a roof is properly maintained and cleaned, it will last its full life expectancy of 20, 25 and even 30 years depending on the shingle grade. That is of course hail, fire or a tornado doesn’t take the roof out! If you see signs of algae as evident by black streaks or stains, green moss or lichen which look like small gray spots, call a local non-pressure roof cleaning company for an evaluation. The professional roof cleaner can tell you what is eating your roof and also determine if your roof truly needs to be replaced or just cleaned and restored.

One thing is for sure, if your roof is infected by any of the aforementioned organisms and not property treated by a certified non-pressure roof cleaner as soon as possible, the life of your roof will be greatly shorted and you will be replacing it!

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