Cleaning a Pitched Roof - Removing Moss


When moss starts to grow on a roof it can be unsightly as well as becoming a nuisance and, if left untouched, moss can cause damage to a roof. So, when owners have had enough of blocked guttering, sweeping driveways or patios of fallen moss or the very expensive job of replacing broken roof tiles it is time to rid the area of moss growth. But what is the best way of removing moss and keeping an area clean & clear? Being totally honest, there isn’t one method that will suit everyone. Most roofs are different to each other, most owner’s requirements are different, access to roofs is vastly different and the moss cleaning budget will also vary. But there is one thing that most people can agree on and that is that they want to remove the moss in the most efficient and cost-effective way and keep their roof clean.

In our opinion, it is always better to try and remove as much of the moss or lichen growth as possible BEFORE using any surface cleaning chemicals or moss prevention chemicals. This can be done by brushing the roof, lightly scraping the area or even by using a small pressure washer. Now before some of you gasp in disbelief at the thought of having to squeeze into a Spiderman costume, scale a wall and skip, nimbly, across a slippery, moss infested pitched roof, let me explain myself. Firstly, removing moss or lichen before the application of a cleaner will save you money and time. If access to your roof is possible then any moss that you can remove will mean that less cleaning chemical will be required and, with the moss removed, the cleaner will be able to be in contact with the surface. If using our BATICLEAN CR then this is designed to clean your roof surface and it can do it much better the less moss that is in place as with the moss removed the Baticlean CR can be in contact with the surface therefore it can clean the surface. Also, the more moss growth that you can remove then the better the chance that you will be able to complete the cleaning job with just one application. The thicker the moss growth then the higher chance that you may have to make more than one application. Secondly, you should only attempt to reach areas that are safe to reach. If you can only reach areas of your roof from a window, a Velux or from a ladder then that is fine. Anything that you can remove is better than removing nothing at all. However, if you can’t remove anything prior to an application then don’t worry, if you follow the application instructions for the cleaning product then the cleaning will be just as successful. It may just take a little longer.

I have mentioned various ways of removing the moss growth from your roof and I know that some of you will have heard various scare stories about what you should and shouldn’t use on different types of roof covering. Let me start by saying that you shouldn’t use anything that is going to damage your roof surface nor use anything that you are going to struggle to use. Brushing is very unlikely to cause any damage however, if you have sand covered tiles, then you could dislodge some of it however this is designed to fall away as the tiles ages so, personally, this wouldn't be something that I would worry about. We have a range of brushes and telescopic lances which can make the brushing of your roof and the removal of moss a less labour intensive task. You can find our RANGE OF BRUSHES & TELESCOPIC LANCES here. Likewise, scraping is also unlikely to damage tiles especially if undertaken with care. The big issue comes with a pressure washer or a hosepipe. Again, using one of these responsibly, will not cause damage to your roof covering. Always spray down, towards the guttering, and not up. This way the water will not be driven under the tiles. Also, just because you are using a pressure washer it doesn’t mean that you are going to have so much pressure that you are going to blast half of your roof into the neighbours’ garden. Providing that you use the water pressure sensibly then you will not cause any damage.

Once the area is clean and dry then apply pH NEUTRAL CLEANER - BATICLEAN CR. This will clean your roof surface and is designed to stay on the roof so does not require rinsing. The roof can then be left, and a new application applied every 12-18 months or when the first signs of dirt or debris appear. BATICLEAN CR is also the best option when you are unable to brush or scrape the roof or would be unable to rinse the surface.

If the roof has heavy dirt, staining or debris coverage the whole area can be treated with RAPID ACTING CLEANER-BATIFACE (or just spot treated), after application it should be left for 30-60 minutes before being rinsed. It is far better to rinse the BATIFACE from the surface before it has had chance to dry. It is for this reason that we suggest rinsing a short time after application. Rinsing can be done with a pressure washer, hosepipe or just by pouring water across the treated area and brushing. You may also find that the method of brushing the area, whilst rinsing, will help to remove the most stubborn areas of staining or debris. Once the area is clean and dry then we recommend the application of BATICLEAN CR to ensure that the whole area is clean.

Once you have cleaned your roof then you can help to keep it clean in a couple of ways; firstly you can apply Baticlean CR every 12-18 months which will help to keep your roof clean and clear of debris. Secondly you can use Hydrosil BS which will seal the area. This not only reduces any possible water
ingress but assists the roof to dry much quicker which discourages the growth of moss.

The application of all of our cleaning and protection products is best done by spraying. This method reduces wastage and helps you to get the products you are using exactly where you want it. We have a comprehensive range of SPRAYERS & TELESCOPIC LANCES that you can see by following the link.