Pressure washing your roof is a bad idea. This is because the high-powered water will cause damage and force shingles off. Pressure washing can also strip away the paint or lead in your home.
Keep reading this blog post to learn more about the dangers of pressure washing your roof:
What is pressure washing?
Pressure washing is the use of high-powered water to clean a surface.
The pressure washer uses water at high pressure and shoots it out in a jet or flow of water to remove dirt or contaminants from surfaces.
The pressure of the water used for pressure washing is measured in pounds per square inch (PSI) and should not exceed 1,800 PSI.
The high-powered water can cause damage to surfaces such as stucco, brick, or masonry siding.
If you power wash a part of your house that has been repainted, the water pressure can pull away some of the paint and cause damage.
Pressure washers produce high-pressure jets of water that you can use to blast the dirt off surfaces that can withstand the pressure.
Even though asphalt shingles are made to handle heavy rainfall, raindrops are not the same as a high-pressure blast from a power washer.
Unless you have your machine set on a low (and less effective) setting, cleaning your roof with a pressure washer would probably do more harm than good.
The pressure from your water jet is so powerful it can easily tear through the adhesives that hold shingles together. The force of a high-pressure hose could also rupture your roof’s fabric underlayment AND blast dirt into the air, which rains back down onto other parts of your roof!
Plus, most pressure washers aren’t made for roof work. Compound that with the fact that you could seriously injure yourself by hauling it up a ladder and the fact that the weight of the machine itself could damage your shingles.
Now, do you really want to damage your roof and potentially destroy it to get the dirt off?
Pressure washers are not made for delicate surfaces and should only be used on surfaces that can handle the high pressure of water. There are many inexpensive ways to remove dirt from a rooftop, like power rinsing or hosing down the roof with a garden hose, which is much safer.
At this point, you may be asking, “If I can’t use a pressure washer to clean my roof, how do I get the dirt off?”
Here are some great and easy ways to clean your roof:
We’re glad you asked.
Here are some other ways to get your roof clean without risking damaging it with a pressure washer.
Why should you never pressure wash your roof?
There are several ways in which you can clean your roof, but one that you should never do is use a power washer. It’s not a good idea to use high-powered water as it can cause damage and force the shingles off, especially if you have asphalt shingles.
If you have a metal roof, while you may be tempted to hop up there and spray it down with a pressure washer, you should also think twice about it. Pressure washing can take the paint right off a metal roof or even lead to other damage that will ultimately cost you money.
You could also create leaks if you accidentally damage a screw or cause the seal to become dislodged.
Then, you’ve got a more significant problem than just your roof, and you’ll need to hire a professional to fix it.
If the seals are broken or if you’ve damaged them, that could cause leaks and other issues. If you have asphalt shingles and pressure wash your house, water can get in between the shingle layers and start to affect the integrity of your entire roof.
If you have an older roof, pressure washing a metal roof could lead to corrosion or rusting, and that will only make your roof look worse than when you started.
It’s always best to hire professionals if you need to clean your roof, as they have the equipment and tools to do the job right without putting damage or force on the roof.
You don’t want to damage your home by pressure washing your roof, so consider hiring a professional if you have doubts about what you can do or need help getting it done.
Alternatives to Pressure Washing Your Roof
Sure, a pressure washer will remove the shingles off your roof if you don’t use it properly. But what if we told you that the real reason why not to clean your roof with a pressure washer is that there are better, more effective methods for cleaning roofs than blasting them with water jets at high speeds?
Leaves, Moss, and Dirt
If you have leaves, moss, or other organic matter on your roof, consider using a rake or a leaf blower to remove them. It is best to remove any organic matter before it has a chance to decay and damage your roof’s shingles.
You can use an old push broom or get a proper roof rake designed to clean your roof. They usually have firm nylon bristles and are comfortable in your hand.
Make sure you buy the correct type of rake, one designed for cleaning roofs.
Now, just gently brush the roof and remove the leaves, moss, or other organic matter.
You only need to brush the shingles, not the roof flashing or gutters.
You can also use a powerful leaf blower with stronger winds to blow the organic matter off of your roof.
If there is dirt amongst the mass on top of your home’s shingles, gently spray it with a garden hose.
Moldy Roof Stains
If you have moldy roof stains, just use your garden hose spray nozzle and some nontoxic chemicals to remove those ugly black streaks.
The result? Your shingles will look as good as they did the day they were installed.
Replace Your Roof
We realize that this sounds extreme but stick with us here.
Most of the time, what makes your roof seem dingy and dirty isn’t dirt. It’s wear and tear from years of exposure to the elements.
Several things can cause wear and tear, but it’s essential to know that pressure washing and using chemicals can worsen your roof. Your best bet is either replacing them or having professional roofers repair them for you because they are much better equipped to handle such a job.
Cleaning Clay Roof Tiles
If you have clay roof tiles, you may still be able to use a pressure washer. Home guide actually recommends homeowners with clay roof tiles use a pressure washer set at 1200 psi to clean their roof.
If your roof has clay shingles, do further research and check with the manufacturer to learn precisely what cleaning methods they recommend.
Get a FREE Roof Inspection Today
Roofs are one of the most critical parts of a home.
You should know that using a power washer to clean your roof is not a good idea because the high-powered water will cause damage and force the shingles off.
If you want to make sure your roof lasts as long as possible, call us for a free inspection! We’ll give you an honest assessment of what needs to be done so you can start making repairs or replacements right away.