Why Do I Have Black Streaks on My Roof? | Space City Washing

Why Do I Have Black Streaks on My Roof?

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Are you starting to notice areas of your roof turning black? If the answer is yes, you're likely dealing with Gloeocapsa Magma, a species of bacteria that can grow on roofs and cause unsightly black sections and streaking. Though the presence of the bacteria is a minor issue to start with, allowing this problem to persist will undoubtedly lead to bigger issues down the road.

In this article, I will talk about why this bacteria grows on your roof, the issues that it can cause, and why it's vital to hire the pros here at Space City Washing, serving the Greater Houston Area, to remediate this issue for you.

Roof Cleaning Experts Explain The Black Streaks on Your Roof

You've just learned that the black streaks growing on your roof are caused by Gloeocapsa Magma, but now let's look at why this happens first. The organisms that cause this roof algae typically land on your roof through the wind in the form of spores. From there, the environment is the primary catalyst in allowing this bacteria to grow on your roof.

A couple of factors can either speed up this process or keep the streaks from showing up at all. The first is the humidity; in an area as hot and humid as it is here in Houston, Tx, roof algae thrive. The second factor is sunlight and how much of your roof is in the shade for most of the day. Typically, the north-facing section of the roof is in the shade the most, and that's why these sections of the roof tend to harvest algae the best and can look much darker than other sections of the roof. So, to put it simply, the humidity and the most shaded areas of the roof become the best breeding ground for these organisms. These algae cells produce a dark pigment that acts as a protectant from the sun, and as these organisms begin to grow and multiply, they will spread themselves down the pitch of the roof, thus appearing as black streaks.

The Importance of Having Your Roof Cleaned

Over time, this algae will accumulate on your shingles in the form of blotches or streaks. The longer you allow your roof to harvest these organisms, the blacker your roof will become until there might not be streaks any longer, but the whole section of the roof is black.

A black roof can cause many issues. Roofs are generally made up of asphalt shingles that contain limestone. The limestone makes a roof reflective of the sun, so when the black algae consume your shingles, your roof attracts heat rather than reflects it. This heat is then transferred into your home, which will, in turn, cost you more money to cool the house to offset the heat being generated by your roof.

Another issue is the fact that this algae not only covers your shingles but it also feeds on them. Over time, these organisms can significantly weaken your shingles which could lead to shingles failing, causing leaks, and ultimately leading you to have to replace your roof.


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Hiring The Experts to Soft-Wash Your Roof

Now that we've talked about Gloeocapsa Magma and the issues it can cause for your roof. Let's dive into what needs to be done to fix the problem at hand… Hiring the Pros at Space City Washing!

Identifying that your roof needs to be cleaned is the first step, but arguably more important than that is finding the right company to do the job. Roof Cleaning is not a service you want to skimp on and should be left to the professionals. The main reason is that a roof cannot and should not be pressure washed. If you get a bid to have your roof "Pressure Washed," quickly run the other direction, as you will have a whole slew of problems should you let someone use a pressure washer on your roof.

Here at Space City Washing in Houston, TX, we use a method called Soft-Washing. Soft-Washing is a technique that combines low-pressure application with a mixture of biocides and water to do the heavy lifting. These biocides kill all of the algae on the roof without causing any damage to your shingles.

Since we use chemicals, there are many measures in place to ensure that the rest of your property stays protected throughout the service. We tarp important plants, keep the property wet with water throughout the duration of the service, and we move any furniture to keep it from getting any overspray on it.

How Much Does Roof Cleaning Cost?

many factors determine the cost of a roof cleaning, such as the pitch of the roof, the sq footage of the home, are gutters installed on the home, the amount of chemical needing to be purchased to complete the job, the amount of property protection needing to be done, the difficulty of the service and much more.

Because of all of this, roof cleaning tends to be the highest costing exterior cleaning service, coming in anywhere from $400 for a section of the roof or upwards of $1500 for the entire roof of an average-sized home.

When looking at the effects of the black streaks on your roof and the potential damage they can cause, the cost of a roof cleaning is a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things. Allowing the streaks to take over your roof can cause damage that will lead to you having to replace your roof much sooner than you had planned.

Increase Curb Appeal and Protect Your Roof

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Now that we've gone over what those black streaks are, where they come from, the damage they can cause, and the cost. You should now understand the importance of having your roof cleaned and why you should choose the roof cleaning pros at Space City Washing in Houston, TX, to provide you with an Out-Of-This-World-Clean!

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