Asphalt Shingled Roof Inspection: A Roof Valley Flashing On An A

Can I Clean My Roof with a Power Washer?

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If your roof isn’t brand new, you may notice you have some staining on the roof. This could be due to moss growth, leaf litter, algae, bird droppings, and any number of natural factors. To get it looking new again, you may be considering giving it a good power washing. After all, it works for the rest of your home and your driveway, right? But not so fast!

Experts Say “Don’t Power Wash Your Roof”

Power washing, or pressure washing, works by ejecting water at a very high speed and pressure. The goal of the process is to dislodge dirt, moss, stains, and other aggravations through sheer force. And while it might work well on your aluminum siding, it’s a bad idea for your roof. 

Asphalt roofing shingles are able to cope easily with snow, hail, rainfall, and other forms of precipitation, but they are not made to withstand the damage that a concentrated beam of water from a pressure washer can aim at them.

But it’s not only about damage to the asphalt shingles. A high-pressure stream of water could also damage the adhesive bond that’s in place to keep the shingles together and maintain a watertight seal. If there are any gaps or damage in the roof, the water from the pressure washer could wind up working its way under the roofing materials into the roof’s underlayment. To do a thorough cleaning job, you’d need to use the pressure washer on a high setting, which would likely only dislodge the dirt and simply move it elsewhere on the roof. 

Finally, there is a personal safety issue. Pressure washers tend to be large, heavy, and unwieldy, so using one on your home’s roof is an invitation to an accident if you’re not trained to work on roofs. 

Alternatives to Power Washing

There are better and safer ways to clean your roof than using a pressure washer. Experts recommend using a leaf blower first to dislodge leaves and large debris from the roof. For any remaining dirt and stains, you can use specially created roof cleaning solvents in conjunction with your home’s garden hose. 

Another option for roof stains is the installation of zinc strips.  It’s a relatively inexpensive way to kill the growth that’s there and prohibit new growth without using chemicals that can damage shingles and the environment.

If your roof is very stained and soiled, it may be time to replace it entirely with a new roof. While your desire to clean the roof likely stems from how it looks, there may be problems with how well your roof is protecting your home. 

Consult a Roofing Professional

Brodeur Roofing is proud to be a GAF-certified roofing contractor serving Connecticut. We offer a 50 Year Weather Stopper Plus Warranty with every GAF roofing system. By teaming up with GAF, we are able to provide our customers with an array of high-quality roofing products that will withstand the elements and look great on their homes.

For more information or a free quote, call 860-838-1279 or visit our website


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