How to Prevent Roof Moss

How to Prevent Roof Moss

Although many people believe that a velvety green covering of moss on their roof adds rustic appeal to their house, savvy homeowners know better. Because it has the potential to cause serious damage to roofs, it’s best to prevent roof moss before it even begins to gain a foothold. Here’s the havoc that moss typically wreaks on roofs:

  • Moss creates a wet environment that promotes mold and bacteria growth
  • Moss causes decay in structural framing supports
  • Moss causes shingles to lift, eventually creating holes in the roof

Moss was designed by nature to retain moisture, and moisture is one of the main enemies of a sound roof. When trapped moisture freezes and thaws, it can pull shingles apart. Moss also traps debris and soil.

Tips For Preventing Moss on the Roof

A multi-tiered strategy is usually necessary to prevent roof moss. It’s a particular problem in areas where moss is prevalent, especially for homes situated under trees or an otherwise shady spot. Here’s what you need to do to keep moss from wrecking your roof.

1. Let the Sun Shine In

As pleasant as it may be to live in a home nestled under the trees, this is a sure recipe for moss infestations. It’s possible to keep moss at bay using a variety of methods. However, homeowners who live amongst the trees must be willing to engage in a reasonably constant battle to prevent moss on the roof.

Homeowners living in homes situated in a wooded environment should make sure that tree branches are trimmed back as to not hang over the roof.

2. Sweep the Roof Regularly

Because moss spores are attracted to organic material, regularly sweeping the roof is recommended. Although this in itself won’t completely prevent roof moss, it helps. Homeowners should use a long-handled brush specifically designed for use on roofs.

Habitually sweeping a roof provides the opportunity to inspect it for moss growth. If moth growth is detected, homeowners should quickly remove it using a moss killing agent available from their local home improvement store.

3. Apply a Zinc or Copper Sheet Metal Strip

Another option for those fighting moss is to have zinc or copper sheet metal strips installed. These strips can be placed below the top ridge on either side of the roof. When it rains, the metals emit chemicals that are toxic to moss.

There should be strong stormwater runoff controls in place for homeowners going this route. These metals may be toxic to fish and other aquatic animals, so it’s important to keep them out of local waterways.

4. Clean Moss Growth off Your Roof

Heavy moss infestations should be removed as quickly as possible, and products that can achieve this are available on the shelves of home improvement retailers. Homeowners can also make their own solutions using the following ingredients:

  • Two gallons of water and 3 1/2 ounces of Dawn dish soap
  • Two gallons of water and one pound of oxygen bleach
  • Two gallons of water and 3 1/2 ounces of chlorine bleach
  • Two gallons of water and 3 1/2 cups of white vinegar

Each of these options should be liberally applied after thoroughly wetting down the roof. Also, soaking the sides of the home and the foundation helps protect surfaces and the surrounding vegetation from damage due to these ingredients.

After the solution has been on the roof for 20 to 45 minutes, gently scrub it with a soft-bristled brush. The next step is to rinse the area thoroughly with water from a hose. Power washers should be avoided because they may damage the shingles.

Contact Us for Your Roof Maintenance Needs

Thompson Creek offers roof replacement services. Please contact us for a free consultation on keeping your roof in the best possible shape for years to come.