Moss on a Roof: Major warning sign

Moss on a Roof: Major warning sign

Do you think the presence of moss on a home roof isn't a big deal?

Well, it is.

Moss on a roof might seem picturesque, leading you to reminisce about novels set in the English countryside, but that's where moss should stay. When it gets a foothold on your roof, trouble ensues.

You see, moss has roots, and those roots penetrate through shingles on your roof, wreaking havoc. In many cases, only certain areas of your roof may develop moss. Namely, those that don't receive any sunlight are ripe for moss growth. The first, seemingly innocent layer of moss on the shingles can be quite thin, but as it grows, it thickens. What you won't see is the moss growing between shingles, too.

As the moss grows thicker and thicker, its presence essentially raises the shingle upward. Asphalt shingles may bend and even break, but wood shingles are even more prone to damage, as they tend to split. It's generally harder to remove moss from wood shingles, too. As a result, moisture gets under the shingles, and winds easily remove them.

Dealing with moss

If you see evidence of moss growing on your roof, here's what to do:

  • If the roof shows evidence of moss that's just beginning to grow, you can generally remove it by washing the area. Depending on the pitch and size of your roof, you may want to hire an expert to do the job, since the job poses a risk of falling off the ladder or the roof—especially when it's wet. You can use a hose and long-handled scrub brush or a power washer with a relatively gentle spray (a strong spray can damage the roof). Alternatively, you can try using leaf blower, which will work if the moss is relatively dry.
  • When moss looks thick and the mass is large, you'll want an expert to evaluate the roof. Depending on the condition of the roof relative to the moss' growth, you may have to replace some or all of the roof.


The best way to avoid having to deal with moss on a roof is to prevent it from cropping up.

Here's how:

  • Create a path for sunlight to reach the roof by cutting down trees and/or removing branches.
  • As soon as you see evidence of moss, promptly remove it.
  • Remove any moss on the property, as the spores can spread through the air and land on the roof.
  • Hire an expert to moss-proof the roof; he/she will use a special solution to coat the shingles and make them moss-resistant.

"Moss on a roof" are four words you never want to hear a roofing expert say. If you're dealing with the problem, get professional help. At Findlay Roofing, we're happy to help you assess the roof, and determine whether remedial services are in order, or, if we can't salvage the roof, a replacement. Give us a call today!

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