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Roof Cleaning With Bleach?
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Midwestpro
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Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 12:19 am    Post subject: Roof Cleaning With Bleach? Reply with quote

So are bleach based cleaners safe to use on your roof? If youíve done any research at all about roof cleaning chances are you are more confused than ever. You may have read that bleach dries out the shingles or that it can discolor your roof. So, is this true?

Well letís take a look at this; first of all did you notice that most all of the companies claiming these allocations happen to also be selling non bleach based roof cleaners? Companies like Roof Be Clean, Roof a Cide, and Roof Restore are just a few. Their only defense in selling their inferior roof cleaners is to scare consumers with myths and lies about bleach. Truth be told these lye and sodium hydroxide based cleaners appeared on the market a few years ago and have turned out to be very dangerous. Even at low concentrations, permanent damage could be done to the roof, possibly even dissolving the roof nails!

The bleach vs. non bleach discussion has been going back and forth for years and will probably continue far into the future. As a roofing contractor I researched and talked to many other contractors in the industry searching for a solution to my customerís black streaked roofs. What I learned is that most of the major shingle manufacturers realize roof algae is an ongoing concern so they have their own recommendations on cleaning roof algae off of their shingles. I knew at this point that whatever their recommendations were, thatís what I was going to use on my customerís roofs because I knew I couldnít go wrong. Companies like GAF, Owens Corning, and the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association all recommend using a mix of bleach and trisodium phosphate applied with low pressure. They also warn against the use of a pressure washer on asphalt shingles.

Most people naturally form their own opinion after reading information on any topic whether itís wrong or right. With the Internet there is so much information out there that it can be extremely mind boggling. But as soon as I found out that the major shingle producers suggest using bleach on their own shingles it made my decision very easy in knowing what to use to clean my customerís roofs. We have cleaned numerous roofs over the past few years and I must say when its done like recommended it is very effective. We will continue using the cleaners and methods that are recommended by the shingle producers no matter what other companies out there are saying about it.
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j_bates23



Joined: 19 Mar 2008
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am going to be cleaning my roof soon and was wondering where can I purchase the trisodium phosphate? And if I use only bleach and water mixture will I get good results?
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Midwestpro
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can purchase trisodium phosphate at some hardware stores or you can find it online like at the chemistrystore.com.

I have personally cleaned roofs successfully with just bleach and water and no trisodium phosphate. But using the TSP allows for a weaker mix of bleach to be used. Anytime you can get away with using a lesser strength of bleach mix it's a good thing.

The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association recommends a mix of bleach, TSP, and water. Solutions for these ingredients may vary between shingle manufacturers and depend on the amount of discoloration. Solutions range from 1 cup TSP, 1 gallon bleach, and 4 gallons of water, to 1 cup TSP and 2.5 gallons of both water and bleach. Use a low pressure method to apply, allow to dwell and rinse with no more than garden hose pressure. Never use a pressure washer on your shingles!

Extreme care must be taken when using bleach solutions around your landscaping and windows. The proper personal protection should also be worn anytime you are messing with chemicals. Safety precautions are a must when climbing around on the roof or a ladder.

You may also consider not messing with any of it and just hiring a professional to do it for you. Just make sure they use low pressure methods. If you do decide to hire, I may be able to recommend a reputable contractor in your area.

Hope this helps, if you have anymore questions or concerns please feel free to ask.
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j_bates23



Joined: 19 Mar 2008
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2008 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice you have been a big help. My final question is how long should I let the bleach dwell on the shingles?
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Midwestpro
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2008 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Normally 15-20 minutes is plenty of time. Depending on the color of your roof you may also notice the black algae disappearing.
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me



Joined: 22 Aug 2008
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2008 2:39 pm    Post subject: recipe Reply with quote

Great post, it sure is nice to find someone willing to help out..thank you very much. I was just wondering how well your recipe works on steep pitch roof and is 1 application enough? also with the recipe you are going to send do I apply it from container pumped through a garden hose or do I use a sprayer? once again thanks alot you have allready been very helpful.
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Midwestpro
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2008 3:30 pm    Post subject: Re: recipe Reply with quote

me wrote:
Great post, it sure is nice to find someone willing to help out..thank you very much. I was just wondering how well your recipe works on steep pitch roof and is 1 application enough? also with the recipe you are going to send do I apply it from container pumped through a garden hose or do I use a sprayer? once again thanks a lot you have already been very helpful.


Our roof cleaning recipe works great on steep roofs, we do a lot of roofs that are non-walkable from a ladder at the roof edge. One application is usually sufficient. You can also add some dish soap to the mix if you want, this helps the chemical cling to the shingles better but it isn't necessary.

For a steep roof you won't be able to use a pump up or garden sprayer very effectively. What most professionals use is a 12volt agriculture type pump. Some good brands are Flojet, Shurflo, and Delavan. You can get one online or from a tractor/farm supply store. One that is at least 1.8 gallon per minute or more is recommended. The more flow the better but at only 60psi. Use 3/8" or 1/2" braided chemical tubing with the pump, we have about 200' on ours.

Keep the pump on your trailer or rig along with a marine type 12V battery. The pump has an inlet and outlet port. Put a short piece of the chemical tubing on the inlet side and drop the other end into your roof cleaning recipe. Then attach the 200' chem tube to the outlet side and a plastic nozzle on the far end of the tubing. Now attach the battery terminals and the pump will start running, most of them are self priming so it should start siphoning from the roof cleaning bucket or tank. Control the spray or distribution of chemicals onto the roof by using the plastic nozzle on the far end. When the nozzle is not open the pump will automatically stop running once the pressure reaches 60psi. This helps to keep the pump from burning up and from building up too much pressure which would start popping hoses and fittings. Once you open the nozzle end the pump starts running again.

Find the right spray nozzle and you'll be able to spray chemical 20-30'. This is how it is possible to coat a steep roof from a ladder at the roof edge without walking the roof.

Be sure to flush the pump and lines out with plenty of fresh water to prolong the life of the pump.

Also, it is EXTREMELY important to take precautions with the landscaping and shrubbery. The algae you are killing on the roof is a plant so it will do the same to all the landscaping if you don't know what you are doing. It is very necessary to have a helper that is constantly watering the landscaping and windows. You cannot let any chemical get on these surfaces and left to dry. We also bag the gutters to catch the dead algae and used chemical coming out the down spouts.

Be sure to wear the proper protective gear while working with chemicals. Safety glasses, chemical resistant gloves, and a respirator are all recommended. Be extremely careful when working on the roof or from a ladder. The chemicals and algae can make the roof and surrounding area (including your ladder steps) very slippery. This type of work is very dangerous which is why it is best left to a professional.
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cobalt.rednitaj



Joined: 21 Mar 2009
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2009 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bleach might be a great idea for roof cleaning as long as u dont end up harming the wall paint!
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Midwestpro
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2009 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point and is why it should be left to a roof cleaning professional. But for the record, bleach is used as the base to clean painted surfaces also. Many painters use a bleach and trisodium phosphate mix to clean and prep before painting. It will not harm painted surfaces when used properly.
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dlmv27



Joined: 22 Oct 2009
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 12:45 pm    Post subject: Roof Lichen/Algae Reply with quote

I see many good ideas on this forum but not too much feedback. Has anyone tried these bleach/water+ solutions lately and what have the results been?

I am looking to clean my modestly stained residential roof section, northern exposure, in the NYC area.....

Thanks,
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FCPWLLC



Joined: 15 Sep 2008
Posts: 144
Location: Lexington, KY

PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 6:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Roof Lichen/Algae Reply with quote

dlmv27 wrote:
I see many good ideas on this forum but not too much feedback. Has anyone tried these bleach/water+ solutions lately and what have the results been?

I am looking to clean my modestly stained residential roof section, northern exposure, in the NYC area.....

Thanks,


We use bleach day in and day out as a professional service. I does work and is the approved method by Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association.

The results are awesome. I have some pictures here of Roof Cleaning.
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bluekingspowerwashing



Joined: 22 Nov 2010
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks for all the info barry! great to have you hope you have a great time during the holidays!
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Midwestpro
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, hope you enjoy the Holidays as well.
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plainpainter



Joined: 15 Sep 2008
Posts: 234

PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am convinced all this dissing of bleach in recent years has more to do with the fact that major chemical supply manufacturers can't sell their chems at high prices with the relative cheapness of bleach. I liken it to Aspirin - aspirin is turning out to be a wonder drug with more and more uses discovered everyday - yet you can buy a bottle of it for $1.99 which has the pharmaceuticals raging mad.

I even believe bleach is great for deck work - I had far fewer problems with decks when I was cleaning them with bleach and tsp. Now I can't even use the stuff because of it's perceive hackishness. I believe they even sell a sodium percarbonate product for washing roofs - percarbs are some of the mose useless restoration chems I have ever used. bob's percarbs probably being the best I have used.

Although - upon Andy's advice about downstreaming F-18 onto concrete and watching the mildew turn pee yellow. I'd be interested how well F-18 would work for roof cleaning?
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JC



Joined: 21 Dec 2009
Posts: 264
Location: egg harbor twp, nj

PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wow, was that spam or what?
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