If your roof has some years under its belt, you may notice signs of wear and tear as it continually braves the elements. Regular inspections from professional contractors (like Noble Roofing) can put your mind at ease by letting you know if any mark on your roof is just an aesthetic issue or an actual problem. One of the most common eyesore homeowners worry about are black streaks on their roof. What are they and what causes them?
What are those black streaks on your roof? (and what you can do about them)
Black streaks are a common sight on asphalt roofs, especially when you live in a humid climate (like Virginia). There are several reasons they can appear and it’s best to get a professional inspection to find the exact cause. Detecting any problems that result in black streaks early can save you hundreds or thousands in roof repair costs. So what exactly can cause those unsightly streaks? Are the causes harmless or can they affect the value of your home? Here are four possibilities.
#1. It’s algae.
The great news for homeowners is that the most common causes of these black streaks are algae called Gloeocapsa Magma. The wind carries the spores of this algae onto your roof. The algae then thrive on the moist crevices of your asphalt tiles. Thankfully, it isn’t harmful to your health like mold. However, if you’re trying to sell your home, it may negatively affect your listing price and bargaining potential. It can also slowly wear down your shingles over time, so leaving it alone isn’t a good idea.
How do you get rid of it? You can either make it a DIY cleaning project or hire a professional contractor to safely and expertly remove the stains. Algae removal requires special cleaners that are designed to ward off future algae colonies. Note: Asphalt shingles WILL lose granules, even during a gentle power wash. This will decrease their lifespan, so choose carefully before cleaning them!
#2: It’s just dirt.
Another culprit is dirt, which can be carried onto your roof by the wind. Dirt is one of the least harmless substances your home can encounter since it just needs some TLC to look like new once more. If your inspection finds only dirt on your roof, you should definitely be thankful!
How do you get rid of it? A simple rinse from your hose may do the trick, but please take care to be gentle on your roof to not damage any shingles. The same risk for asphalt shingles apply to this as well.
#3. It’s mold/mildew.
If you find black mold on your roof, you shouldn’t put off removing it. Mold can affect the health of you and your family by triggering respiratory problems and allergies. Mold can also transfer from your roof to your framework, making more costly repairs in mold remediation if not treated early.
How do you get rid of it? Get the help of roofing professionals ASAP who will assess the situation and either remove the mold or replace parts of the roof that are far gone. It’s very important to stop mold in its tracks to prevent bigger problems.
#4. You have defective shingles.
Cracked or torn shingles are more likely to harbor mold, algae, and dirt. Therefore, this cause can often be in conjunction with reasons #1-3. When you find a broken shingle, you should replace it immediately.
How do you get rid of it? If you have the know-how and the right tools, you can make this a DIY job. However, if you lack the ladders and safety equipment to do this correctly, please get the help of seasoned contractors like us.
Schedule an inspection today to prevent costly future repairs.
In our next post, we’re going to discuss roofing’s unsung heroes: the soffit and fascia. Be sure to check it out and let us know if you have any questions.
Noble Roofing is the expert you can turn to for residential roofing and storm damage services. For more than two decades, we’ve developed a reputation for sheer quality and dependability. We serve Centreville, VA, and other nearby areas. Give us a call today at (703) 429-0840 and experience our top-notch service for yourself.