What is best cleaner for cleaning asphalt roof,shingles

#1
I am new to this and new to Roof cleaning.I am an experienced pressure and steam cleaner in the industrial field. I am interested in starting a roof cleaning Business and would like to know what is the best and safest product for this. I am looking for easy application and minimal prep as far as plant protection.
any help would be greatly appreciated....
 
#2
well, you could try...

you'll find that the majority of roof cleaners are using sodium hypochlorite which is basically liquid chlorine. i've used it myself and it works and it works good...but, it does not like plant life. you will have to rinse the area, tarp the plants and shrubs close by and then rinse again during and after application. this is best done with another person on the ground. i have tried many products on the internet and i have recently become a "roof reviver" (www.roofreviver.com) contractor. this stuff is biodegradable and will not harm plants or shrubs. the drawback to this product is that you have to rinse it off with about 400-500 psi of water after you let it dwell for awhile. that means you have to be right on top of the product to get it off. i've done it using a 1500psi pressure washer and a 40 degree nozzle. this is a long process that i am not crazy about. i have recently started using a product called "new again" (www.newagain.net) and it also comes in a powder form as "roof reviver" does. the good thing about this product is that you only need between 75 and 150 psi to get it off. it is also biodegradable. you'll find that different roofs require different applications and experience will help you decide on what to use.

good luck,

rando
 
#4
Don Phelps said:
Although not quite as quick, sodium hydroxide will damage landscapes also. It will also streak paint.
...and frankly, I have had too much flesh removed by sodium hyderoxide. While chlorine is no picnic, I find it easier to deal with. Also, in my experience, roof stains will stay gone a lot longer with chlorine.
 
#5
The RoofReviver site is pretty interesting. A little fear Advertising. Here's a snippet.....

Roof Reviver(TM) does NOT contain chlorine bleach. Bleach products should NEVER be used on your roof!

I guess they don't know that the Asphalt Shingle Manufacturer's Assoc. suggests using Bleach.

It does look like whatever they put on does work but working on a flatish roof with a pitchwitch looks pretty easy. Would love to see some video of them doing my neighbors house which has some brutal shingled spires about 3.5 stories up.
 
#6
it does work

roof reviver does work and it does work good as long as you can get some water pressure on it to rinse. now it does take awhile also so make sure if you use it that you charge accordingly.

rando
 
#8
douseahouse said:
roof reviver does work and it does work good as long as you can get some water pressure on it to rinse. now it does take awhile also so make sure if you use it that you charge accordingly.

rando
I wasn't bashing RoofReviver the product as it does seem to work but their statement regarding bleach has no basis in fact and, because of that, I discount them as something I would not want my name associated with.
 
#9
letitrip said:
Thanks for all your help, Now where do I buy the sodium hypochlorite and what concentration?
A local chemical supply company should have it or get it for you and typically they sell it around a 12% solution. If you don't have a chemical supply company nearby go to your local pool supply store and get "pool shock" which is the same exact thing.

Chemical supply here sells 55 gallon drums of it for $111 and pool supply stores usually have it at about $2.50 gallon.
 
#10
If you get it from a pool supply, make sure they are selling you sodium hypochlorite and not calcium hypochlorite. They don't work the same when cleaning roofs.
 
#12
This is my first post but i aggree about the 12%,ive used it for years, im thinking of going full time in the washing buisness, where i live no one does roofs , most dont have any idea it can be cleaned,does any one have any advice about leaving a fulltime job making 60 a year and going full time into the cleaning buisness thank you
 
#13
Around here our pool supply stores sell 12% for $5.00 a gallon! If you buy it in bulk you can get it for $4 but it's definetly not a deal.

I've tried bleach and 3 sodium hydroxide based roof cleaners and the good ones work about the same as pool bleach. There are a couple places in the area that I've found that I can buy bleach from now for about 2.25 a gallon and that's what we usually use. It just depends on the client and on the job. Some manufacturers say that using bleach will void the warrantee on the shingles but I haven't noticed any problems and I've been doing it for quite some time now.
 
#14
Henry Bockman said:
Around here our pool supply stores sell 12% for $5.00 a gallon! If you buy it in bulk you can get it for $4 but it's definetly not a deal.

I've tried bleach and 3 sodium hydroxide based roof cleaners and the good ones work about the same as pool bleach. There are a couple places in the area that I've found that I can buy bleach from now for about 2.25 a gallon and that's what we usually use. It just depends on the client and on the job. Some manufacturers say that using bleach will void the warrantee on the shingles but I haven't noticed any problems and I've been doing it for quite some time now.
$5/gallon is amazing! I pay $1.15/gallon and that is higher than it has been in some time. Stick with what works best for you. I like bleach for many different reasons.
 
#15
bluedawg said:
This is my first post but i aggree about the 12%,ive used it for years, im thinking of going full time in the washing buisness, where i live no one does roofs , most dont have any idea it can be cleaned,does any one have any advice about leaving a fulltime job making 60K a year and going full time into the cleaning buisness thank you
You need to do what your gut tells you to do, 60 is no problem if you go at it the right way. Shoot for #1 in your town and don't settle for less. Do the best job, advertise the best, have the best equipment, build a great website, and show great confidence when estimating jobs. You will be #1 if you work hard and want it bad enough!
 
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#16
Roof Clean Chems

Raw chlorine, or sodium hypochlorite, will clean the roof, in a sense that it will kill mold spores and sanitize bacteria. Being as powerful as it is, it usually cleans stains pretty well, depending on the dilution. It should never be used @ more than 30%, and a complete rinse is needed. It should be "misted" onto shingle roofs, and saturated onto tile roofs (during your one hour set time you'll want to flush out the plants and shrubbery).
Sodium Hydroxide- Just like "sodium hypochlorite" is the polite name for chlorine, "sodium hydroxide" is the polite name for LYE. When roof cleaning was in it's early stages, LYE was used to clean shingle & tile roofs. Lye is Caustic soda, very dangerous stuff. So chlorine became the alternative. It was safer (not much, but indeed safer) and worked better. Now, as time has evolved, sodium hydroxide is the way to "not use bleach". But it's only history repeating itself!
"What's the best roof cleaner?"
Well, it's NOT chlorine... it's NOT caustic soda... it's NOT hydrogen poroxide or Trisodium Phosphate. It's not the spray on and forget chems, either. Go to home depot & get their roof cleaner. You can dilute every 1 gal of roof cleaner with 3 gals of water, and pull with your 20% (5:1) downstream injector. OR...it will work mixed @ a ratio of 1 gal roof cleaner to 7 gals water when applied direct (shur-flo, gas powerd app, etc). The cleaner's active biocide will turn yellow as it cleans, and 1 hour later your residuals will rinse away @ low pressure (using your 80 tip). After you're done, you can dilute @ 1 gal roof cleaner to 16 gals water and do a final "over-tone" (just apply a final application product and allow to dry, with no rinse). You can do that every six months on maintenance programs and the roof will never get dirty again.
Being a newbie, it's hard to afford non-chlorine chems. But the roof cleaner @ home depot is 22 bucks a gal... it's appx 45 big onez to clean a roof. When cleaning tile, you'll be using a mixture ratio of 50% chlorine, 50% roof cleaner (w/5 cups TIDE, 1 cup DAWN, 2 cups CARNUBA CAR WASH & WAX). Again, an overtone should be done. If you MUST use sodium hypochlorite, just be very careful. Always flush plantlife, and always rinse. Don't get near vinyl, glass, or cars.
 

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