Moss is a seemingly harmless plant. It’s lovely to look at, and it makes nice padding when sitting under a tree having a picnic or simply enjoying the fresh air. Some people even add decorative mosses to their planters and flower beds. When moss grows on a roof, though, it’s quite a different story. Its ability to grow and spread in damp, shady areas make roofs an ideal habitat for it. Once it starts to take over, it can cause numerous problems if left to its own devices.
For one, moss retains water like a sponge. When it grows on a roof, that water retention exposes materials underneath to excessive moisture. That moisture can easily seep into not only the shingles but also the underlayment. That, in turn, could make the roof more susceptible to decay and leaks. It also detracts from the roof’s structural integrity.
All that damage may even eventually spread to other areas of a building. On top of all that, it creates a prime breeding ground for mold and mildew. Those are some of the reasons regular roof cleaning is so important.
Moss doesn’t have roots like most other plants. Instead, it has tiny hairlike structures known as rhizoids. The fact that those structures are smaller and finer than conventional roots doesn’t make them any less intrusive, though. As moss takes hold on a roof, those rhizoids can work their way beneath shingles, tiles, and other roofing materials. As they grow and spread, they may lift the edges of roofing materials, which creates problematic gaps.
Those gaps allow water to seep underneath roofing materials where it can cause extensive damage over time. In cold weather, that water may freeze and expand in those gaps. That causes even more serious damage to not only roofing materials but the underlying structure. Keeping a roof clean and free of moss helps to prevent that damage.
Reduced Curb Appeal
At the same time, moss growth can detract from the curb appeal of a home. Though most greenery makes a home more aesthetically pleasing, moss accumulating on a roof is an exception to that rule. Between the moss itself and all the damage it can cause, it may affect a home’s market value and its potential for attracting buyers.
Keeping Moss at Bay
Roof cleaning is an essential measure for keeping moss at bay. Several methods are available for removing moss from a roof, including pressure washing, chemical treatments, and manual scraping. That being said, those may not be the best solutions. In some cases, they may cause even more damage than the moss alone.
It’s best to clean a roof and remove moss gently. That’s where steam cleaning excels. It’s a completely safe, gentle, and effective process. It removes moss as productively as other methods without risking added damage to roofing materials. It’s also an environmentally friendly solution. It eliminates the moss without damaging greenery on the ground that property owners want to keep in place. Keep in mind, though, that it’s always best to hire a professional roof cleaning company to ensure the process is carried out thoroughly, effectively, and safely.