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Roof Cleaning Equipment: Everything You Need to Know

roof cleaning


Keeping your roof clean is an essential part of maintaining your property. Not only does it improve the overall appearance of your home, but it also helps to prevent damage caused by algae, mold, moss, and other harmful elements. That’s where roof cleaning equipment comes into play. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about roof cleaning equipment, including the different types of tools and systems available, the cleaning process, and important safety considerations.

What is Roof Cleaning Equipment?

Roof cleaning equipment refers to the tools and systems used to wash and clean roofs. These tools can include everything from simple garden hoses and spray nozzles to more specialized equipment designed specifically for cleaning roofs. The goal of roof cleaning equipment is to remove dirt, grime, algae, moss, and other debris from the surface of the roof to prevent damage and maintain its condition.

Types of Roof Cleaning Equipment

There are several types of roofing system and all the equipment for roof cleaning is available on the market, each designed to serve a specific purpose. Some of the most common types of roof cleaning equipment include:

  1. Roof Cleaning System

A roof cleaning system is a specialized piece of equipment designed specifically for cleaning roofs. These systems typically use a high-pressure pump and a hose to spray water and cleaner onto the roof surface. They can be powered by electricity or gas, and they often come with different nozzle options to allow for more precise cleaning.

  1. Surface Cleaners

Surface cleaners are another type of specialized equipment designed for cleaning roofs. These tools feature a ball-shaped housing that spins rapidly to clean surfaces quickly and effectively. They are particularly useful for large, flat roofs, and can be attached to a pressure washer for added power.

  1. Spray Nozzles

Spray nozzles are a simple and effective tool for cleaning roofs. They attach to a garden hose and allow you to adjust the water flow and pressure for optimal cleaning. They are ideal for smaller roofs and can be used to remove stains and debris from the surface of the roof.

  1. Roof Cleaning Chemicals

In addition to equipment, roof-cleaning solutions can also be used to clean roofs. These cleaners are specially designed to remove algae, moss, and other types of stains from the surface of the roof. They are typically applied using a sprayer and left to sit for a period of time before being rinsed off with water.

The Roof Cleaning Process

The roof cleaning process typically involves several steps, including:

  1. Preparing the Roof

Before you begin cleaning your roof, it’s important to prepare the surface. This may involve removing any loose debris, such as leaves or branches, and covering any plants or landscaping that could be damaged during the cleaning process.

  1. Applying the Cleaner

Once the roof is prepared, you can begin applying the cleaner. This may involve using a roof cleaning system, surface cleaner, or spray nozzle, depending on the type of equipment you have available. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the cleaner you are using.

  1. Rinsing the Roof

After the cleaner has been applied, you’ll need to rinse the roof thoroughly with water. This can be done using a hose, a pressure washer, or other specialized equipment. Be sure to rinse the roof completely to avoid leaving any residue behind.

  1. Inspecting for Damage

Once the roof has been cleaned and rinsed, it’s important to inspect the surface for any damage that may have occurred during the cleaning process. This may include leaks, cracks, or other types of damage. If you notice any issues, it’s important to address them promptly to prevent further damage.

Important Safety Considerations

When it comes to cleaning your roof, safety should always be your top priority. Here are some important safety considerations to keep in mind:

  1. Use Protective Gear

Before you begin cleaning your roof, make sure to wear protective gear, such as gloves, safety glasses, and a respirator mask. This will help to protect you from any chemicals or debris that may be present during the cleaning process.

  1. Choose the Right Equipment

Be sure to choose the right equipment for the job. This includes selecting the appropriate type of cleaner, as well as the right tool for the size and type of roof you will be cleaning. Using the wrong equipment can lead to damage to the roof or injury to yourself.

  1. Follow the Manufacturer’s Instructions

Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using any type of roof cleaning equipment. This will help to ensure that you use the equipment safely and effectively.

  1. Check for Electrical Hazards

If you are using an electric-powered roof cleaning system, be sure to check for electrical hazards before beginning. This includes checking for overhead power lines or other sources of electricity that could pose a risk.

  1. Work with a Partner

Consider working with a partner when cleaning your roof. This can help to ensure that you have someone to assist you and watch for any safety hazards.

  1. Avoid Working in Wet Conditions

Avoid cleaning your roof in wet conditions, as this can increase the risk of slips and falls. Wait for dry weather before beginning the cleaning process.

  1. Avoid Walking on the Roof

Whenever possible, avoid walking on the roof during the cleaning process. This can increase the risk of damage to the surface and increase the risk of falls.

Benefits of Using Roof Cleaning Equipment

Using roof cleaning equipment can offer several benefits, including:

  1. Improved Curb Appeal

One of the most obvious benefits of using roof cleaning equipment is improved curb appeal. A clean, well-maintained roof can make a significant difference in the appearance of your home.

  1. Preventing Damage

Regular cleaning using the appropriate equipment can help to prevent damage to your roof caused by algae, moss, and other harmful elements.

  1. Longer Lifespan

A clean roof can last longer than a dirty, neglected one. By regularly cleaning your roof, you can help to extend its lifespan and save money on costly repairs or replacements.

  1. Healthier Living Environment

Cleaning your roof can also contribute to a healthier living environment by removing harmful contaminants such as mold and algae.

  1. Increased Home Value

A clean, well-maintained roof can increase the value of your home. This can be particularly beneficial if you plan to sell your home in the future.

Choosing the Right Roof Cleaning Equipment

When it comes to choosing the right roof cleaning equipment, there are several factors to consider. These include the type of roof you have, the condition of the roof, the size of the roof, and your budget.

If you have a particularly large or complex roof, you may want to consider investing in a specialized roof cleaning system. These systems can be more expensive, but they offer the power and versatility needed to clean even the toughest stains and debris.

For smaller or simpler roofs, a spray nozzle or surface cleaner may be all that’s needed to get the job done. These tools are generally more affordable and can be used with a standard garden hose or pressure washer.

Regardless of the type of equipment you choose, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and take appropriate safety precautions to ensure that the cleaning process is safe and effective.

In Conclusion

Cleaning your roof is an important part of maintaining your property and it is necessary to clean your roof. With the right roof cleaning equipment, you can keep your roof looking great and prevent damage caused by algae, moss, and other harmful elements. Whether you opt for a specialized roof cleaning system or a simple spray nozzle, be sure to take appropriate safety precautions and choose the equipment that’s right for your needs. With regular cleaning and maintenance, your roof can continue

Cedar Shake Roof Cleaning in Des Moines Iowa
Cedar Shake Roof before & after cleaning

Meet Bruce

50 Years of Experience &
Over 2,000 Shake Roofs Cleaned

Bruce Sullivan has over 50 years of experience in maintaining, cleaning, and restoring cedar shake roofs. Making him one of the top authorities on cedar shake roofs in the US.

Watch the Cedar Shakes Cleaning Process in Action in this video

Play Video about Roof Cleaning How to Remove Moss, Lichen, Fungi from a Cedar Roof Sullivan Roof


What can I say? Bruce and Keith provided an exceptional service, and they are really nice guys too. Found out at the last minute they were in Minneapolis, and they fit me in for a cedar shake roof cleaning the next evening after their regular job was done. Even cleaned up my gutters, small fence, and small deck at no charge. The place looks outstanding! Highly recommended.

Mike Richards

I highly recommend this business. Due to the work performed we are going to get another 10-14 years out of our cedar shake roof. We were told by some roofing companies that the roof should be replaced in 2 years. I lucked out and found Sullivan Roof Cleaning while researching companies that perform this service, and was pleased to learn that the company does work outside of Iowa. If you need your cedar shakes cleaned, go with Sullivan Roof Cleaning.

Eric Oelrich, 
St Cloud, MN

Bruce did a great job cleaning the whole exterior of my house. The roof has new life! It looks practically brand new. All the mold and moss on the roof, on the gutters, under the eaves, completely gone. He exceeded all our expectations. When he tells you what he can do for your house, you can believe and trust him. Great guy, great service.

Stuart Malone
Kansas City, MO


Cedar shakes are organic. Though a resilient material. Being organic they need to be maintained. Over time, like any organic material that are subjected to weather elements, they reach a stage of deterioration. Like UV exposure, moisture and seasonal changes. Which results in moss, mold, mildew, lichen and brown rot fungi. These infestations need to be removed to further preserve the integrity of the cedar shake.
The proper way to clean a cedar shake roof is from a ladder. By spraying a special formulated solution onto the shakes and then rinsed with a garden hose pressure. Best done by a professional cedar shake roof cleaner. Not DIY recommended.
No. Pressure washer will require walking on the shakes, which will harm them, and even at its lowest setting will also damage the shakes.
On average, cedar shakes should be cleaned every 10 ten years. Subjective to the grade of the shakes and the amount of surrounding tree cover.
Avoiding walking on a cedar shake roof, other than for repairs.
Never seal a cedar shake roof. Cedar shakes need to breathe. They expand and contract in rain conditions. Seal will shorten the lifespan, to the point of premature replacement.
Staining has no real preserve value and can also harm the integrity of shakes, as stated, they need to be able to breathe. Also, if the shakes are not properly cleaned staining can seal the deteriorating infestation within the shakes.
Depending on the grade of the shakes and installation, and if maintained properly, 40 to 60 years.


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