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Do’s and Don’ts Of Cleaning An Asphalt Shingle Roof

Published on Wednesday April 20, 2022

Learning the best way to clean asphalt roof shingles is all part of the job when you’re a homeowner. If you’re wondering how to clean asphalt shingles—either how to clean moss off asphalt shingle roofs or how to clean mildew off asphalt roof shingles—then you’ve come to the right place. We’re going to show you all the do’s and don’ts when it comes to cleaning asphalt shingles so you can get your roof clean and prevent damage.

How to Clean Asphalt Shingle Roof

Roofs are the main barrier between you and all the inclement weather happening outside, so keeping your roof in good shape is more than worth it. While stains, mold, mildew, and other collecting debris are all normal, that doesn’t make them desirable or mean you can ignore them for extended periods. Neglecting to clean stains on your asphalt shingle roof can worsen an issue, spreading underlying bacteria, and leading to a costly repair job or roof leaks.

If you notice stains or debris on your roof, it’s important to get them cleared off as soon as possible—either by tackling the job yourself or calling in an experienced professional for help. This will keep your roof in better shape for longer.

Best Way to Clean Asphalt Roof Shingles (Do’s)

1. Contact a Professional First. Working with a licensed, experienced professional for your roof cleaning task is highly recommended. A licensed contractor can minimize damages to your roof and ensure it is cleaned in a safe, efficient way. Reach out to Long Roofing for any of your roofing cleaning, repair, or replacement needs. We can help you find the most efficient, affordable solution.

2. Eco-Friendly Methods. Make sure that environmentally-friendly cleaners are the only chemicals used to get your roof clean. This will protect you, your family, and your flower beds, not to mention it will be better on your asphalt shingles. Ask your roofing contractor what eco-friendly cleaners they recommend.

3. Remember the Gutters. Cleaning your gutters is one of the best ways to ensure your roof stays healthy. Making sure the gutter system (including the downspouts) remains clean will help prevent roof rot and water overflow, which in turn protects your foundation.

4. Use the Right Tools and Equipment. You should never go to your asphalt shingle roof with sharp, harsh materials or equipment. Gentle, shingle-safe brooms and brushes are ideal. Avoid sharp metals that could damage or dislodge your shingles.

5. Tree Trimming. While long tree branches are beautiful to look at, they’re bad for your roof. Trimming back any overhanging tree limbs will prevent leaves, sticks, and branches from falling on your roof, helping keep your roof clean and safe.

6. Remove Debris. When leaves and sticks settle into your roof’s valleys, they keep in moisture which can lead to mold issues and leaks. The best way to keep your roof clean is to clear away lingering debris.

Worst Way to Clean Asphalt Roof Shingles (Don’ts)

1. Pressure Washer. Think about what happens to your roof during a hurricane or a storm with high winds. That tends to cause damage to your asphalt shingle roof, doesn’t it? Pressure washers can propel water at speeds faster than 200 MPH which is far more pressure than most storms present. Using a pressure washer on your roof is a great way to rip, loosen, or dislodge shingles. Don’t attempt to use this tool, even on stubborn roof stains.

2. Severe Chemicals. There are a lot of chemical products sold as a “shortcut” for various home cleaning jobs, but don’t fall for it. Bleaches and harsh chemicals can certainly get rid of mold and mildew, but they’re toxic to humans and pets, will ruin your landscaping, and can cause damage to your roof—either by breaking down your shingles or corroding the metal flashing, valleys, and gutters.

3. Rough Tools. When you’re figuring out how to clean moss off asphalt shingle roof, it can be tempting to scrape at it with a hand scraper or a harsh-bristle brush. Be very careful when using rough tools on your asphalt shingles since you can easily break them, rip them, or tear away the asphalt granules.

4. DIY Project (without proper experience). If you have the right experience and tools, then attempting to clean your roof isn’t a big issue but it does present a lot of dangers. Roof cleaning isn’t for everyone and it’s not recommended to climb up on your roof unless you have the necessary skills, experience, and tools to complete the job safely. 

Work with the Roofing Experts

If you’re still unsure of the do’s and don’t s in terms of asphalt roof cleaning, don’t hesitate to reach out to the pros. If you’re looking for high-quality roof repair, the experts at Long Home Products can get the job done. Find your closest Long Home Products location today.

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