Roof Cleaning Products – My Two Cents

People are always asking my opinion of different fad roof cleaning products that they saw in the store or on the internet or wherever, and I always try to patiently explain that there is a safer, more effective way.  Trust me that if there was a way to profitably package and sell a bleach-based roof cleaning solution to the public I believe these companies would do it because they should know it’s the safest and most effective method, but there isn’t so they don’t.

Instead they’ve developed these powdered or condensed products that they can manufacture cheaply, ship light for next to nothing, and let you deal with doing all the work (like mixing, renting a power washer, etc.).  They go to great lengths to bash bleach/chlorine based solutions because it’s not something that they can profitably sell!  They’ll tell you how “green” their product is and how “bad” bleach is but if you do your research (the fact that you’re here at this site is a good start) you’ll discover that bleach-based roof cleaning is the superior method from both a safety and effectiveness standpoint if you know what you’re doing.  I’ve cleaned hundreds of roofs with bleach (and ZERO pressure, by the way) and an experienced rinse man, and we’ve never once seen roof, gutter, or house damage as a result.

Roof Cleaning ProductsOn the other hand, I can tell you there’s a chance that if you try to use one of those fad products on your roof in conjunction with a pressure washing wand that you’ll lose significant numbers of granules from your shingles.  I’ve seen it first hand where other roof cleaners have taken high pressure to a roof and there are literally hundreds if not thousands of shingle granules on the ground circling the entire perimeter of the house.  This is not good!  They might even tell you that they’ll use an extension piece to disperse the pressure through multiple nozzles and though this is a step in the right direction it’s still too much psi for my comfort level.  Other purveyors of these kinds of products will tell you to spray it on a few times over the course of a few weeks without the aid of a pressure washer and you’ll see some results three months to a year down the road.  Well, I guess if you’re willing to wait that long then be my guest.

As for me, I’ll stick with non-pressure and bleach, thank you very much.  I suggest you do the same, or at least hire a professional non-pressure roof cleaning service to do it for you safely and effectively.

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12 Responses to Roof Cleaning Products – My Two Cents

  1. Steve Harper says:

    Great information for someone looking to start up a roof cleaning business. I clean windows and gutters, but now live on the west coast of Canada in British Columbia. There is moss everywhere and especially on the roof tops……would like to stop using the low pressure method of a power washer! Have read the entire website and can seem to find measurements for solution. Can you help the new guy in the business do it right?



  2. Steve Diodato says:

    What ratio of bleach to water do you suggest?


    • Zach Maynard says:

      I would suggest you use about 30% bleach and 60% water. You can also add TSP but you need to make sure it is okay to use it in your area. It will strengthen your mix a lot but it can etch glass and take the finish off of some paints so you need to be careful.

  3. james zinno says:

    Instead of bleach I use chlorine and it it works fine. I do not dilute it. I use a backpack sprayer and spray the entire roof and then go back where I started and do it again. The black streaks disappear. I do not rinse. What do you think of this method?

    • Zach Maynard says:

      I would not suggest this method as it is very dangerous to use a backpack sprayer. First off if it springs a leak you can only imagine where the chemicals will go.
      Also you should try not to walk on the roofs if at all possible. They will become very slippery with the chemicals on them.
      That is why we use pumps and professional setups. A roof cleaning professional can clean almost any roof without actually stepping foot on it!

  4. jim hines says:

    what is the mixture of bleach and water used for algea!

  5. Carlos says:

    Very informative site, good job!

  6. Tony Carlisle says:

    Again, I am so glad that I joined this website. You represent us all so well.
    Thank you

  7. John Malone says:

    Thanks Zac for sharing your expertise, would like to start professional operation John.

  8. Zach Maynard says:

    Hello John,
    While I did not write this particular article, I appreciate you taking the time to comment!
    Having a professional roof cleaning operation is the only way to go, let us know if you have any questions.

  9. Wayne Wright says:

    Hi Zach,
    I’ve been procrastinating for years about starting a roof cleaning business. There is a big need in my area, with no one doing it. But, I’ve always been overly concerned about chlorine runoff leaving streaks on fascia, soffits, siding, etc. I understand you NEED a good rinse man, but …
    Also you have said your mixture is about 30% chlorine, 60% water. What about the other 10%? What strength chlorine do you use at that percentage? Chlorox is 6%, pool chlorine is 10%, and some commercially available chlorine is 14.5% (if I remember the salesman correctly)

    Thanks, Wayne

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