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Tuesday, 1 June 2021

What Causes Stains on Your Roof?

Roofs are designed to protect us from the elements. Therefore, they receive the brunt of everything nature has to offer. While roofs are exceptional at protecting us from the elements, they are not immune to the damage and effects such as roof stains that result from these external hazards. Read on to find out what causes them.

Tree Saps

If you have trees with branches hanging over your house, the black stains on your roof are most likely caused by sap. These stains can only be removed by chemical treatment through soft wash roof cleaning.


The sap is a viscous, syrup-like substance produced by most trees. Some trees have it in smaller quantities, while some can drip large amounts of it onto your roofing. Because of the viscosity of sap, it tends to collect dirt and organic matter such as small leaves and branches. In turn, these organic matters decay in place and get absorbed by your shingles, causing black stains on your roof.


Some of the most common trees that can deposit large amounts of sap on your roof are maples, walnuts, birches, and butternuts. If you have these trees in your yard, make sure you prune the branches regularly. Cutting overhanging branches will help you prevent sap from dripping onto your rooftop.


A huge factor in tree sap issues includes insects, which love to dwell on large trees. They usually feed on plant materials such as leaves, twigs, and bark. For example, insects such as aphids feed on oak trees by sucking the juice out of their leaves. Once they’re full, they produce a waste byproduct called “honeydew.” If the tree branches tend to hang over your roof, a combination of sap and honeydew can fall onto your roof, staining it.


Trees respond to insect infestation and damage by producing more sap. Oaks infested by aphids and their honeydew causes them to get sick. Therefore, they make more sap. Another insect species known to cause trees to overproduce sap is beetles. Many beetle species bore into the tree trunks to lay their eggs. Because of this, trees produce plenty of sap to protect themselves.


If you have various trees planted near your house, it is always a good idea to regularly check them for insect infestations. Not only would it keep your trees healthy, but it would also help you keep your roof clean from sap and insect excrement.

Animal Excrement

Small animals and insects have a tendency to poop on roofs. Practically, you cannot prevent this from happening. However, you can resolve this issue by regularly cleaning your roof. Call a professional to help you remove insect and animal excrement safely.

Algae and Fungi

These organisms tend to grow exceptionally well in warm and humid areas. Molds, mildews, and algae are pretty common and can grow quickly on roof surfaces. You can prevent their growth through soft wash roof cleaning. The chemicals present in the cleaning materials kill off any organic matter growing on your roof down to its roots. This treatment also causes your roof to be unfavorable for further organic growth.


When molds and mildew grow on your roof, they extend their root-like appendages deep under the surface. Not only that, but they also produce spores that spread and cause more growth on your roof’s surfaces. As they grow, they cluster together, forming unsightly patches on your shingles.


Algae also behave the same. Roof shingles are commonly made from asphalt or limestone, which are conducive to algae growth. One common algae species called Gloecapsa magma causes blue and green patches to form on your roof. It absorbs water and calcium carbonate to grow. So, if your roof shingles are made from limestone (mostly calcium carbonate), they will most likely form on them.

How to Clean Stains and Prevent Them in The Future?

It might be impossible to prevent roof stains completely. However, there are some effective methods to minimize them and address common causes. As mentioned, the best cleaning method you can use is soft washing. This allows you to address the problems at the roots effectively. The chemicals used can kill off any existing plants, algae, and fungi and prevent regrowth.


Additionally, proper maintenance practices such as pruning tree branches and using insecticide can drastically reduce stains caused by tree saps and insect excrement. Make sure you contact your trusted cleaning service providers as well as tree and insect experts for the best way to address your existing issues.

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