Frequently Asked Questions

If you have ugly black streaks on your roof and have been wondering how to safely get rid of them, Stain Medix Roof Cleaning can help!

Stain Medix Roof Cleaning is a family owned, Maryland roof cleaning service. We are conveniently located in central Maryland and serve the greater Baltimore and Washington, DC areas. Some of the cities that we serve include Frederick, Germantown, Gaithersburg, Olney, Potomac, Rockville, Silver Spring, Poolesville, Mount Airy, Damascus, Boyds, Ellicott City, Baltimore, Sykesville, Catonsville and Columbia. We currently serve Montgomery County, Frederick County, Howard County, Carroll County, Baltimore County and Washington, DC.

A roofing company said I need a new roof!

Some roofing companies may try to tell you that black stains mean that you need a new roof. This is not necessarily true. If your shingles are not lifting, your roof is not leaking and the granules are mostly intact then there is absolutely no reason to replace your roof. Roof washing is less than 10% of the cost of replacing a shingle roof.

Why can’t I just pressure wash my roof?

At Stain Medix Roof Cleaning, we use state of the art equipment, specially designed for roof cleaning to safely remove the bacteria feeding on your shingles. Our sytem employs low-pressure and high volume to reduce any damage to your shingle roof. Our roof cleaning system is the only one recommended by the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA). ARMA cautions homeowners and contractors to NEVER allow pressure washing equipment to be used to clean shingle roofs. Pressure washing loosens and removes the protective ceramic granules on the surface of the shingles that reflect heat and protect the shingle composition.

What are those ugly black streaks on my roof?

The black streaks sometimes referred to as “algae'” are actually a strain of cyanobacteria called Gloeocapsa Magma. Many asphalt shingles were manufactured using a limestone filler to provide weight. The limestone is a natural food source for the bacteria so as the spores are carried through the air or are deposited onto the roof by animals, they settle on the roof and start to reproduce. Most of the growth that we see is on the north facing side of the home as this typically provides the most amount of shade. The cool, damp environment is the perfect breeding ground for these critters.

Are the black stains just ugly or are they harmful to my roof?

It it difficult to say just how many years of useful life that any particular roof has left and what effect that the growth has on it. But many experts agree that allowing growth to continue on a shingle roof promotes premature failure of ashpalt shingles. The bacteria produce a natural, protective outer coating which is what we perceive as the black streaks. The coating allows moisture to be trapped underneath. This moisture can harbor mold growth. The combination of mold and bacteria feeding on the limestone content in the shingles compromises the integrity of the shingle.

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