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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

The Do’s and Don'ts of Roof Cleaning

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 06 September 2016 10:49


Your building’s roof is an integral part of its structure. You can’t afford to overlook its maintenance, whether you own a multifamily unit or manage a commercial complex. Roofs take punishment on a regular basis due to their exposure to UV rays, fluctuations in temperature, and structural damage caused due to acts of nature. It is, therefore, imperative for you to avail professional roof maintenance services from a reputable commercial roofing contractor to maintain the functionality of your roofing system. Cleaning the roof, however, is one thing that doesn't really require expertise but simple knowledge on how to proceed and the right tools for the job. Follow the do’s and avoid the don'ts discussed in this blog and your roof will not only be clean but enhance its functionality, lifespan, and the property’s aesthetic appeal.


Get rid of algae

Algae develops on rooftops over time, especially if you live in a region that experiences a fair amount of rainfall and sunlight throughout the year. Algae not only impacts your roof’s aesthetic appeal but can also damage roofing materials including the shingles, therefore, shortening the roofing system’s life. To avoid this problem, you need to climb onto your roof top at regular intervals and use soft brushes and cleaning solutions to get rid of algae growth. Use a leaf blower if you find too many leaves or pine needles accumulating on the roof.

Declog the gutter 

The gutter diverts water away from the roof, therefore, avoiding damage due to water stagnation. The functionality of the gutter takes a beating when leaves and debris clog it, increasing its weight. The gutter’s structure can cave under this pressure, increasing chances of water damage. Avoid this problem by inspecting the gutter at regular intervals, especially before it's about to rain or snow.

Trim the surrounding vegetation 

Make sure to trim the trees surrounding your roof as they can rub or lean against it, especially during storms. Moreover, leaves can accumulate and clog the gutter, making it difficult for you to avoid damage due to water stagnation. Trimming leaves, and branches hanging from the trees can help you address this problem. When you’re done, make sure there are no residues left behind on the roof. 


Let's take a look at some of the things you need to avoid doing while cleaning your roof

Don’t use a pressure washer 

Pressure washers can damage your roof’s structure, therefore, shortening its useful life. A better alternative to using a pressure washer is going for a garden hose with a sprayer set at the lowest setting. Avail multi-family roofing services, if using a garden hose doesn’t help you get rid of tough stains. The specialists will use a pressure washer at variable settings to clean the roof without impacting its structural integrity. 

Don’t forget to wear protective gear 

Wear protective gear such as skid-proof shoes, harness, and pads when surveying the roof to ensure you don’t get hurt in case of a fall. Additionally, use a ladder higher than the roof to ensure you don’t have to climb onto the roof. Never stand on the last rung as it’s not fit to support your weight and can break down, exposing you to accidents and mishaps.  


Make sure to refer to the above list of do’s and don'ts when cleaning your commercial property’s roofing. Additionally,  avoid painting or coating shingles as this can impact their functionality. Last but not the least, don’t hesitate seeking expert roof maintenance services if, at any point, you think the scope of the project extends beyond your expertise or capacity. Doing so can help you avoid further roof damage and accidents. 

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Groot Etkeens

Groot Etkeens is a professional writer for the multifamily renovation and repositioning industry. He specializes in multifamily investment and acquisition strategies, rent optimization and market trends and growth.

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