From the roofs to decks, expo- sure to outdoor elements can wreak havoc on homes over time, giving rise to moss, mold and mildew that can discolor and dam- age the building materials. Here’s how to fight back.
KEEPING MOSS OFF
YOUR ROOF I love moss in the woods, but not on a roof. Roof moss tends to grow on north-facing roofs that receive less direct sunlight and stay damp longer than south-fac- ing roofs. Moss needs a moist environment to survive, and south- facing roofs have the benefit of more sunlight and tend to be drier.
There are three contribut- ing culprits that promote the growth of moss: ( 1) moisture, ( 2) lack of sunlight, and ( 3) roof debris. Overhanging tree branches provide shade, as well as drop debris onto roofs. The debris retains moisture and acts as a food source for Moss. Moss can also damage your shingles and reduce their overall longevity and performance. As the Moss grows, it attaches to the shingles and raises their leading edges. As the shingles lift or curl upward, they’re at an increased risk of tearing off due to high winds.
ROOF SAFETY Before you venture onto your roof, realize that falls from a roof account for many serious injuries and deaths in construction. Make sure you take appropriate steps to minimize your risk of slipping and falling. Never work on a wet roof. Keep your work area as clean of dirt, tools and debris as possible. Wear safe footwear; soft-soled boots provide the best roof trac- tion. When working on a steeply pitched roof, protect yourself with safety equipment such as a safety harness. Set up and climb your ladder properly.
DO IT YOURSELF
by Rob Robillard
Show Moss Who’s Boss
Moss on the roof can damage your shingles and reduce their overall longevity and performance.
When preparing for the job, protect all surrounding vegetation from exposure to chlorine bleach.