Roof Moss Removal Guide for Complete Beginners

Published by: | Updated: March 24, 2023
Roof Moss Removal

Is moss on a roof bad? Yes, it is. 

Moss absorbs moisture. Thus, it dampens your roof, damaging it in the long run. 

Then how can we remove moss from a roof

Here is an easy 3-step process for beginners that will leave you with a clean and safe roof.

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About The Author

Meet the expert behind this article. 



Co-owner & Service Director

Hey there, I’m Cody. 

A decade of residential and commercial pressure washing led me to start JCS Refresh. Now I can share my knowledge with folks like you. 

Reading from Kitsap, Washington?

Our team specializes in various moss removal services and is standing by with free quote.

Quick Answer

Looks like you’re in a hurry. We’ve summarized the whole process here. However, as a beginner, you should read the full article to know everything in detail. 

  1. Scrape the moss with a broom or a brush. 
  2. Spray chemicals (mixture of bleach and water or pre-made chemicals).
  3. Let it sit for 3 to 4 days and rinse. 
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Quick questions before starting

How difficult is this to do?

Moss removal from the roof is an easy task. It doesn’t require special machines or chemicals, however, they can speed up the process. 

How long does it take?

Though the treatment will likely take 3 to 4 days, your working time can be anywhere from 2 to 3.5 hours, depending upon the size of your roof. 

What kills moss on a roof?

Chemicals like bleach, detergent, and specially-made moss removal chemicals kill moss from the roof. Here are the supplies you’ll need: 

  • Spray bottle: $2 to $3
  • Moss removal chemical: $15 to $33
  • Bleach: $5 to $10
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Safety considerations

Roof cleaning can be dangerous. So here are 4 points to ensure your safety. 

1. Use a safety rope

Accidents can happen, so it’s better to use a safety rope. It comes with a bracket that you can screw at the top of the roof and tie the rope around yourself. 

2. Wear rubber shoes 

Avoid slippery shoes at all costs. 

Your shoes should have a good grip so you don’t fall. Rubber works excellently in such scenarios. 

3. Protect the plants

If you’ve plants under the roof, move them if they’re in a pot. 

If they’re in the ground, wash them with water before and after spraying the chemicals on the roof. The first rinse will ensure plants don’t absorb chemicals, and the second will rinse and clean them. 

You can also put a plastic sheath on the plants. 

4. Don’t use a power or pressure washer

Power or pressure washer can damage the roof shingles. It’s better to use an ordinary spraying nozzle to protect your roof.

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5. Always start from the top

Whether scraping, applying chemicals, or rinsing, always start from the top. Never begin from the bottom, or else you’ll ruin the shingles. 

6. Work on a sunny day

You shouldn’t treat your roof on a cloudy or rainy day. In such a case, the chemicals won’t get enough time to kill the moss before it rains

Clean your roof on a sunny day so the chemicals can get a few days to work.

How to kill moss on the roof

We’re discussing a 3-step process to answer how to get moss off the roof

But first, you should know the best time for moss removal

Summer and spring are the most appropriate times for this job.

A single person can handle the entire roof. However, getting another person will speed up the process.

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1. Scraping the moss 

Firstly, we’ll manually remove as much moss as we can. 

Take a medium-to-hard bristled brush or a broom and gently sweep the roof. This’ll remove the big moss patches. 

A brush won’t work if the moss is too deep into the shingles. Use a stick and slide it under the shingles. Start scraping from the top and move toward the bottom. 

Once the entire roof is done, use the same brush to sweep the roof. You can also use a blower to fasten the process.

Be careful while scraping. Too much pressure can damage the shingles.

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2. Using chemicals 

It’s time to treat the leftover moss. Now here you’ve options regarding what chemical to choose. Whichever chemical you decide on, the method will be the same. 

You can use the following: 

Mix it in a bottle having a spray nozzle and spray it all over the roof. Ensure every small area is covered. Let it sit for 3 to 4 days.

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3. Rinse everything off

After a couple of days, the moss will be dry and dead.

In case it rains, your job is done. The rainwater will rinse the dead moss and debris, and your roof will be clean. However, you’ll have to do it yourself if it doesn’t. 

Don’t use a pressure or power washer. Use a regular hose to rinse the roof.

Let the professionals do it if it doesn’t sound like your thing. The cost to remove moss from the roof is worth it. You can expect an average cost of $490.

How to remove moss from the roof naturally

You can manually do the job if you don’t want to use chemicals. It’ll require more time and effort. But it’s a quick solution for small areas and little moss growth.

“And what’s that method?” 

It is damping the surface with water to loosen the moss and then scraping it.

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How to remove moss from a shingle roof

Shingles are delicate and can’t bear pressure. 

You can use all the methods and techniques we discussed on a shingled roof. 

All you have to do is to be very careful while scraping. Even your hand pressure can damage the shingles. We recommend starting from the top and working your way downwards. This reduces the risk of damaging shingles.

What’s the best roof moss killer?

If you’re not into DIY solutions and want a moss removal chemical, try Wet & Forget. It’s one of the best moss killers available in the market. 

It doesn’t require any scrubbing. Plus, it comes with a pretty convenient hose. Just spray the chemical all over your roof and let it do its job. 

It gets rid of moss, algae, bacteria, and mildew from roofs, driveways, and patios.

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What causes moss to grow on a roof?

The perfect habitat causes moss to grow on roofs. 

Moss lives in humid, shadowed areas where there’s no direct sunlight. Most roofs fulfill all these requirements. Hence moss starts to grow. 

The following factors make roofs an ideal place for moss to grow. 

  • Most roofs don’t get direct sunlight, mostly due to trees. 
  • Due to lack of sunlight, water doesn’t evaporate.

4 Tips for moss prevention on roofs

Once you’ve cleaned your roof, how will you ensure the moss doesn’t grow back?

Here are 4 tips for preventing moss from growing back. 

1. Use metal strips

Copper, zinc, and lead strips are popular for preventing moss. You can get them from any local hardware store. 

Place the metal strips so that one-third part is under the shingle. Use nails to hold it, and seal them with roof cement. You only have to apply it on the topmost part, not the entire roof. 

How does this work? As it rains, the metal dissolves with the water. As it moves down the roof, it kills any molds or moss growing in the shingles.

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2. Let the sunlight come

Moss grows in dark and moist places. Sunlight is the best solution to eliminate their habitat. 

Trim any outgrown branches that shield the roof. 

3. Clean every year

It’s best to clean your roof once every year. It’ll prevent extreme moss growth.  

4. Keep the gutter guards clean 

If you clean your roof but not the gutter guards, It’s no surprise that moss will grow back. 

The gutter guards also often have moss; leaving it unclean will spread to the roof again.

Frequently asked questions

Let’s answer some most asked questions about roof moss removal. 

Can you remove moss from a roof with vinegar?

Yes, you can use vinegar to remove moss from your roof. It’s one of the best chemicals for a quick DIY fix.

Is moss on the roof harmful?

Many homeowners ask, is moss bad for your roof? There’s no doubt that moss is detrimental to roofs. It holds on to moisture which damages the shingles. It also attracts small insects and flies. 

Left untreated for too long can cause seepage or even break your roof. 

What do I do about a barn with a moss-covered roof?

Clean it as soon as possible. Moss attracts insects, flies, and mosquitoes. They can damage the stock stored in the barn. 

Use the same method for removing moss from a barn’s roof. Ensure the chemical doesn’t reach the stock.

Does baking soda kill moss on roofs?

Baking soda can kill roof moss. 

Dilute it in water and spray it over the roof with a hose. The moss will be dead within 3 to 4 days.


This was a complete 101 guide on how to get rid of moss on the roof

Here’s a summary of what we just discussed. 

Moss is harmful to your roof. It’s better to clean it immediately. You can use vinegar, bleach, or baking soda as a DIY treatment. Another option is to use chemicals dedicated to moss removal. The last option is to call a professional and let them handle the task. 

We hope we can simplify the process and clear up your confusion.

Thanks for reading!