Roof is important for curb appeal

Published On: Aug 01 2012 02:20:36 PM CDT   Updated On: Aug 07 2012 04:00:11 AM CDT
Generic House Neighborhood
HOUSTON -

Improving your curb appeal goes beyond just the curb. Making your home look more appealing can start from the roof down.

Black smudges and dark streaks running down roofs are more than just dirt and grime. They can be any number of unattractive leftovers from mother nature.

Roof-cleaning contractor, Michael Spiczenski, said the dark stuff is just a clue to what could be happening underneath.

"Most people see that black algae streaking and what that black algae streaking is actually the dead cells that are on top of the live cells. It's called geo capsule magnels is the name of the algae that is on there," said Spiczenski, a professional roof cleaning contractor.

"If you see algae or moss streaking on your roof, removing that can make your house look a lot better," said Angie Hicks, who created the website Angie's List.

Hicks told Local 2 whether the gunk on the roof is just an eyesore or causing real damage is debatable. What isn't controversial is getting rid of it makes a home look better.

"When talking to potential companies about cleaning your roof, things you want to be careful of are anyone that considers pressure washing or abrasive detergents in order to clean the roof," Hicks said.

Before you make the call or even decide to climb that ladder yourself, Hicks said you need to check your warranty.

"Because they could potentially damage your roof or void your warranty," Hicks said.

Roof cleaning can cost anywhere from $350 to $1,000, but Hicks said the inherent danger in this particular household chore can make the investment worth it.

Spiczenski said using professional equipment is not only more effective but can be safer than a home owner climbing up and down a ladder to get around on a soapy roof.

"We use a solution that we put on the roof that's called a soft wash. We spray it from the gutter line and we have an air compressor on our truck which run the pumps that we utilize. They are called off-low pumps. We are able to shoot 50 feet from the ladder on the roof itself," Spiczenski said.

Hicks has one other note.

"Keep in mind, if your roof is old or in need of repair, that's the first thing you should be doing before you step to cleaning it," Hicks said.

So, before making the call to the cleaning service, make one to have a home inspector come out and check your roof. Something Hicks said every homeowner should be doing every two to three years anyway.

Angie's Hit List for Hiring a Roof Cleaner: