How to clean a cedar roof

Complete DIY Guide.

How to clean a cedar roof - Complete DIY Guide.

More and more home owners are now opting for a Cedar roof for its ability to compliment the general aesthetics of the home – offering a beautiful natural wood finish. However, without the proper maintenance plan in place then things can turn south very quickly.

Why Clean A Cedar Roof?

Cedarwood roofing is made up of organic material and the surface of the cedar shingles will loose its natural appearance over the years unless maintained properly. There are numerous advantages of having a Cedar roof cleaned regularly to increase the lifespan of weathered wood shingles and to provide a safe roof over your families head.

1. The likes of moss, lichens and algae will cause your Cedar roof to begin to decay over time as its constantly absorbing in the moisture elements of the fungus.

2. Cleaner drinking water – Our rooftop is the first run off point from a big downpour of rain before it reaches our gutter’s and downpipes and then collected in our water tanks. Having a well maintained clean roof will improve the quality of water in our water tanks.

3. Having a mossy and slippery roof top will make contractors very hesitant to access your rooftop in the event of further maintenance such as water leaks, solar panel maintenance or gutter cleaning.

4. Weaker pieces of wooden cedar tiles are further weakened due to the constant expansion, contraction, and drying cycle when moss or lichens are growing on your roof.

5. The longer you leave your roof exposed to the elements, the longer its going to take to restore it.

6. A cedar shake roof will last many years longer if it is cleaned regularly (We recommend yearly.).

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Preparation Of Cleaning A Cedar Roof

Firstly, before we get stuck into the grit and grime of actually cleaning the cedar roof itself . We need inspect the entire surroundings of the rooftop for over hangings branches and tree’s, dropped leaves on the rooftop and inspect the guttering and downpipes of the property before we even begin with cleaning the actual rooftop.

This is because we need to ensure the entire roof system is in a satisfactory working order before getting too far ahead of ourselves. 

Begin by cutting down any overhanging tree branches from the rooftop. As this will be eliminating the amount of falling leaves clogging up the guttering (especially for those on rain water) and opening up sun light onto the cedar roof which will help to assist in the further prevention of moss, lichen and algae. Tip: Moss, algae and lichen dislike the sun and only tend to grow in shady areas.


Now its time to remove any loose leaves from the rooftop itself. If you have a leaf blower or a battery air blower then this would be our number one pick for the task, make sure you are harnessed off safely before attempting to do any sort of roof maintenance.

Gutters – Make sure you now remove and dirt and debris from the gutters themselves. This is to ensure when we do decide to tackle the roof wash itself, there is no blockages or further damages to your property. Make sure you inspect the downpipes too as these are often the cause of blockages.

Grab yourself a pair of non slippery work boots, some overalls and jacket.

We are now ready to tackle the roof wash. 

How to Clean A Cedar Roof.

Well, unfortunately there is no “one way fits all” option when it comes to providing advice on the best solution for cleaning your cedar roof. There are many factors that come into play when choosing the correct methodology for the task, so lets break it down.

Pressure washing – Yes pressure washing is an option when it comes to cleaning your cedar rooftop. However, we advise you leave this in the hands of a professional roof cleaner.
You would want to choose a setting and PSI which is going to safely remove dirt and grime from the cedar shingles without causing damage. We recommend choosing the lowest setting possible on the machine and slowly increasing when needed. It is possible that the pressure created from a water blaster can infact, cause more damage than good. This is why we suggest engaging in a professional roof washer from the start – if your unsure then don’t risk it, simple.

Soft washing – Soft washing is the approach of using a combination of a selected chemical such as chorine or oxygen bleach mixed with water. These types of bleaches are effective at killing algae and mold on cedar shake roof surfaces, and they provide a clean, tan-colored finish. Also, using the right type of bleach removes just enough of the wood fibers that have weathered over time. We recommend using a solution no stronger than one-part bleach to three parts water. Apply it with a pump sprayer and let it sit for about 15 minutes before rinsing it off with a garden hose. Be sure to keep the hose pointed downward to avoid forcing water up behind the shingles. This should remove mildew and algae and reveal that buff tan color. You can scrub off any persistent dirt or grit with a nylon bristle brush.

Hire a professional – When it comes to cleaning a cedar roof, its more than unlikely that one is going to go the extent of purchasing a soft washing machine, a couple liters of chemical and pressure washer with extensive hose and height safety experience. Just don’t risk it. The team as SD Property Services can assist you in providing a competitive price and safe alternative to washing your cedar roof.

Ready To Work With Us?

If After Reading This Article You Still Have Doubts And Concerns, Or Perhaps Questions Then Reach Out To Us Today.

SD Property Service’s offer a professional, safe and efficient service. We always make sure to leave your property in the best shape possible. Contact us today for a free no obligation quote.

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what other property maintenance services do we provide to mangawhai?

Another great reason for choosing SD Property Services as your Mangawhai house painters. We can offer a wide range of property services which eliminates the need for multiple contractors, quotes and headaches.

Besides our interior and exterior painting services, we also can provide roof painting.

No matter the job, big or small – get in touch with us today for all your house painting needs.

SD Property Services have you covered when it comes to finding a local contractor to tackle all those pesty jobs in Mangawhai.

We offer roof cleaning and gutter cleaning services across all of the Kaipara district. Or if you are looking for someone to clean the exterior of your home, then check out our house washing services for mangawhai & surrounding suburbs.

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