Did you know that there are an estimated 12,000 species of moss throughout the world?
The Rocky Mountains alone is home to 22 species of just the sphagnum moss, also known as “peat moss”. The rest of Colorado is home to 13 peat moss species.
As amazing as these plants look in forests and as landscape covers, they can make their way to roofs. Moss on roofs may look pretty, but leave them there long enough, and they can cause damage.
Ready to learn how moss can pave the way for roof damage and what you should do if you see these plants on your roof? Then let’s dive right into it.
What Exactly is Moss?
Moss is a plant that grows just about anywhere, including poor soil and rocks. They don’t have “true roots” but they grow root-like parts that provide anchorage. This is why they can securely attach themselves to the surface they grow on.
It’s also these root-like parts that make them harder to get rid of than molds or lichen.
Like molds, however, these plants produce tiny spores that they release into the air. These spores can land anywhere, including your roof. Once the weather becomes cooler and moister, they will start to germinate.
Now, keep in mind that the garden kind of moss takes as little as six weeks to grow vigorously on rocks or bricks. The spores that land on your roof will take more time to grow and become actual moss carpets. Still, once they establish themselves on your roof, it’ll be harder to clean them off.
How Can Moss on Roofs Cause Damage?
Leaks are among the most common roofing problems in Colorado. Damage from inclement weather, as well as a lack of maintenance, can all lead to these leaks.
However, roof moss can exacerbate or contribute to the severity of these leaks.
After all, moss has exceptional water retaining properties. So much so that in their natural habitat, they stabilize slopes and prevent soil erosion.
So, imagine how much water that moss growing on the roof can hold. These plants act much like a sponge, soaking and storing moisture and as much rainwater as they can. Some of the water they store can leak onto the roof material beneath.
The longer this continues, the more water can seep into your roof’s shingles or tiles. Over time, this leakage can soak into the underlayment of the roof. Ultimately, the innermost parts of the roof, such as the sheathing, can get saturated.
This is why you’d want to start removing moss from your roof as soon as you see them in small patches. As much as possible, include moss removal as a key part of your roof maintenance for fall. This way, you can worry less about these plants holding rainwater (or melted ice during the winter).
Get Rid of Moss Before They Start Causing Roof Damage
There you have it, your ultimate guide on the damage that moss on roofs can do. So, as soon as you see green patches on your roof, have them removed ASAP. The sooner you do, the less moisture your roof has to deal with.
Ready to clear your roof of moss? Then please feel free to get in touch with us now! We can get those plants removed before they start causing roof damage.