Part of being a homeowner means constantly cleaning your home. Whether you’re thinking about doing some spring cleaning or if you like to have a regular schedule when cleaning your home, you can’t forget about the exterior, like your siding and roofing. These are often overlooked but can be a great exterior home improvement project to complete regularly. Here’s some information you need to know and tips on how to keep the exterior of your home looking great.
Should You Wash Your Siding Periodically?
Your home’s siding will get dirty over time and could even form mildew or algae depending on the weather elements, humidity, shade cover, and more. One of the biggest problems homeowners run into nowadays is thinking that they never need to clean their vinyl siding. This type of siding is great in many ways, but homeowners make the mistake of thinking they don’t have to perform any preventative maintenance on it. While vinyl siding might be low-maintenance, it’s not maintenance-free. Algae will grow on virtually any type of siding and it’s usually found on the north side of your home or in shaded or covered areas. You’ll notice it as a green coating that could be widely spread or isolated to just a few areas. Algae likes to grow in areas that don’t get as much sunlight, which is why the north side of your home usually experiences the most algae since it does not get as much sun.
The good news is you can clear off the unsightly algae growth from your vinyl siding and make it look like new again. It’s recommended to hire a residential siding home improvement expert that specializes in the exterior cleaning of homes. Specific techniques have to be used when cleaning vinyl siding to ensure it doesn’t come unlocked or that water doesn’t get behind the siding. The last thing you want to happen is to cause more problems by cleaning it improperly, so it’s a job best left in the hands of a professional.
Can Algae On Your Roof Become Problematic?
Another exterior home improvement project you might have to complete is cleaning your roof. Nowadays most roofing brands include copper and zinc in their shingles, which help prevent algae growth on the surface. The problem is many algae resistance warranties only last for ten years after the roof replacement project is complete. Once the copper and zinc wash out of the shingles your roof will become susceptible to algae growth.
One thing homeowners often get confused about is the differences between moss, lichen, and algae. When you see a blackish tint on your roof’s surface, you’re looking at algae. If you prevent the growth of algae, you will also be preventing the growth of lichen and moss at the same time. When it’s time for a roof replacement, it’s always valuable to look into the manufacturer’s algae resistance warranty. We like to use Atlas roofing shingles since they offer a 15 year warranty against the growth of algae. Once this 15 years goes by and the algae resistance warranty expires, the homeowner can contact Atlas and file a claim to get their roof cleaned by a professional as part of the Atlas roof warranty.
How Can You Clean Algae From Your Roof?
The good news is even if you don’t have a limited lifetime warranty on algae growth for your roof, you can still clean off the algae without having to do an entire roof replacement. One of the most effective ways to clean algae from your roof is to power wash it to remove it entirely and make the roof look new again. However, it’s best to leave this job in the hands of a professional so you don’t damage your shingles and cause more roofing problems as a result. Even a professional roof cleaning will lead to lost granules from the shingles, which could lower the life expectancy of the roof.
One of the best ways you can clean algae off the roof yourself without damaging it is using a product called Wet & Forget. Assuming your roof isn’t too steep, you can get on your roof to apply the product yourself safely. Simply connect it to your water hose or fill up a sprayer to spray the product on the roof’s surface. The product will kill the algae and then will be washed off the next time it rains. You don’t have to worry about washing it off yourself and it’s best to let it sit on the surface for a couple of weeks. Depending on how much algae growth you have on your roof, a second application might be needed, but this is a very effective product that any homeowner can appreciate.
At Phil Beaulieu Home Improvement, we have found this is one of the best ways homeowners can clean algae from their roofs without lowering the life expectancy. A tip we also want to pass along is to wait until the fall season once plants have gone dormant. The Wet & Forget product is generally safe to use around plants, but waiting until the fall ensures it won’t kill any of your surrounding plants.
Keep Your Home’s Exterior Clean Throughout The Year
Cleaning the exterior of your home regularly will keep it looking great and extend its lifespan as much as possible. Just like maintaining your car, the more you keep up with the regular maintenance, the longer it will last. Phil Beaulieu Home Improvement is here to help you with any exterior home improvement project you have, so contact us at any time to see how we can help.