What to Do About Moss on Your Roof
If moss grows on parts of your roof that are shaded, it can cause roofing materials to gradually deteriorate, which can shorten the roof’s lifespan. Moss can also get into spaces between shingles and cause the roof to heave. Water can then enter gaps beneath shingles, which can cause the underlying roof structure to rot and the roof to leak.
How to Get Rid of Moss
Clean moss from the roof on a cloudy day so any cleaning product that you use won’t evaporate before it has a chance to do its job. Wear old clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty, as well as protective equipment, including gloves, safety goggles and slip-resistant shoes.
Spray water on any sections of the roof that have moss. Start at the top of the roof and work your way down. Use a brush to scrub away as much moss as you can, working on one section at a time.
If you can’t get rid of all the moss by scrubbing alone, use a pump sprayer or spray bottle to apply a chemical product. You should only use a chemical cleaner if necessary because it can damage plants. If you use a chemical moss remover, cover plants near the house with sheets of plastic to protect them.
You can find a variety of products that kill moss at a local home improvement store. Some are ready to use and can simply be sprayed on the roof, while others will have to be mixed. Some products should be left on for a period of time and then rinsed off, while others should not be rinsed off. Read the label and follow the directions carefully so you don’t accidentally damage your roof or vegetation in your yard.
You can also make your own moss remover using diluted bleach or vinegar. If you use a homemade cleaning solution, leave it on for at least 20 minutes before rinsing it off.
After you have used a cleaning product to get rid of moss and rinsed the roof (if appropriate), see if there is any remaining moss. If necessary, scrub any areas that still have moss, then rinse the roof again.
How to Keep Moss From Coming Back
Once you have gotten rid of moss on your roof, you can take some simple steps to prevent problems in the future. Trimming branches that hang over the roof can give the surface more sun exposure and prevent moss from growing.
You can also use strips of zinc or install strips of metal flashing that are coated with zinc or copper below the roof’s peak and ridge caps. Rainwater will release zinc or copper particles that are toxic to moss and will prevent new moss from growing.