Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Metal Roof Maintenance and Cleaning

The first and most important step for metal roof maintenance is to keep it clean. Cleaning will help to reduce the build up of algae, mildew and mold, and will go a long way towards ensuring that the roof remains in the best possible condition.

Step by Step Roof Cleaning:

• First of all you need to assess the roof’s condition. An older roof that is worn and damaged will need to be cleaned much more thoroughly and more carefully than a newer roof.
• Make sure that it is safe to work on your roof. Ascertain beforehand that you can reach all the places on the roof where it will be necessary to go. If you feel it is required, wear a harness or some kind of safety rope
• Use a wire brush to scratch away any corrosion, rust or excess paintwork before you start cleaning. For harder objects, you can use a putty knife, but be careful not to scratch the paintwork where there is no excess paint as this could damage the roof sheets.
• Use a TriSodium Phosphate solution (TSP) and mix it with water, approximately half a cup to one gallon of solution. Bring the solution up to the roof in a large size bucket and apply it to any dirty areas, especially where there is mildew or mold. Then you neeed to take a soft brush and scrub the area until it’s clean. If the roof is especially dirty it might be a good idea to scrub the whole roof down. After scrubbing the roof, rinse the washed areas with buckets of water, making sure that no TSP residue is left over. Once the roof is dry, you can evaluate its condition again.
• The final step may or may not be required, usually depending on how old and dirty the roof is. If you think it is necessary, use a power washer on the roof. This is the best possible way to clean off the hard to remove, ground in dirt. Begin at the top (ridge) of the roof and work downwards, as this allows for the debris and grime to be washed away as you clean. Try to keep the nozzle of your power washer at the same distance from the roof as you gradually work your way down spraying it. If necessary, add a little detergent to the water, but not too much because you’ll want to avoid suds which can leave a sticky film on the roof.
Finally, rinse the roof down again and allow it to dry. The last step after cleaning is to re-apply a coating of protective metal roof paint.

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