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Preventing Roof Stains

Roof Stains – keeping them at bay.


What can I do to keep those stains and streaks from reappearing on my roof? 

We get asked that very question quite often by our clients throughout Northern Virginia and Maryland.    As a service provider and  a business owner, I’d love to be able to offer our customers a long term solution once we’ve cleaned their roof.   And if a solution that worked actually existed, we’d certainly offer it.  The fact is, there’s virtually nothing that can be done.

But what about zinc strips along the ridge?

There are many companies out there that will gladly sell them to you and install them too.  Ask them about a stain free guarantee.  Not a warranty (where they simply pro-rate your fee) but an actual guarantee, in writing.   You won’t get it because zinc strips simply do not work.  Please read on.

Copper strips?

Same thing as with zinc.  They do not work.  Please read on for an explanation.

Roof Cleaning Northern Virginia

Zinc strips - algae on the shingle and the zinc too.

But don’t the shingle manufactures use a copper oxide, or a zinc oxide in the algae resistant shingles that are now offered? 

They certainly do.  And that copper oxide and/or zinc oxide coating is across all of the granules of the shingles encompassing the entire roofing surface.  Therein lies the key –  the zinc and copper is spread uniformly across the roof.  With the strips mentioned previously,   the zinc or copper ions are only effective within a few feet of the strips themselves.    Simply stated, algae will manifest just a few short feet below the zinc strips where there are no zinc or copper ions.

If zinc or copper strips worked, we’d certainly offer that additional service.

Roof cleaning Northern Virginia

More ineffective zinc strips.

OK.  I get it.  So what CAN be done about those embarrassing streaks and stains?  American-ProTech made our roof look great again for a very reasonable fee.  How can I keep it that way?

Short of keeping organic matter off of the roof (leaf litter, limbs etc), there’s nothing that can be done for steep pitched roofs with a heavy northern exposure, or other roofs that are heavily shaded.  A routine, professional cleaning is the only option.  Call us before the stains are horrible again, and we’ll be able to apply a much lighter maintenance coat at a reduced rate.

And when it’s time for a new roof, then Algae Resistant (AR) shingles would be a wise choice.  But they are only algae resistant , and not algae proof, and most manufacturers will only guarantee them to be free of algae stains for 8-10 years.

To understand more about the roof  stains themselves, and why they’ve only started to be a nuisance s of late, please visit this section on roof algae.

Of course no obligation roof cleaning consultations are always an option.  We’ll spend as much time answering your questions as you’d like,  and there’s never any sales pressure.

In Virginia, call 571 250 9650, or from Maryland call 240 398 3800.

We’re American-ProTech, the region’s leading roof cleaning company.

  • Professional Staff
  • Professional Equipment
  • Professional Results – EVERY time.
Roof Cleaning Northern Virginia



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