Dealing With the Black Streaks on a Roof

Even though the black streaks on your roof might look like mold growth, soot, or dirt — all of which are possibilities — the most likely explanation for them is that a form of algae causes them. This is because algae tend to have a matted appearance. The presence of algae is by far the most common explanation for black streaks that appear on asphalt roofs.

This resilient algae, known as Gloeocapsa magma, is a blue-green algae that transforms into a harder, darker outer coating over time. As a result, the black stains that streak your asphalt roof are caused by this algae.

This particular species of algae consumes any limestone that may be present in your asphalt shingle roofing, which weakens the shingles the longer the algae are present.

In addition, if you continue to let the algae thrive on your roof for another year, it will continue to spread. Furthermore, over time, it will become more apparent. While this look isn’t pretty, the main concern is the damage that it is doing to the roof.

This algae traps moisture in the roofing materials, causing premature aging. You must remove it as soon as you possibly can so that the shingles on your roof do not rot.

Are black streaks on the roof bad?

As we just stated, the majority of the time, the growth of Gloeocapsa magma is the cause of the black streaks that appear on roofs. Because this variety of algae thrives in moist, shady environments, the spores of this kind of algae can easily become established on asphalt shingles. Additionally, they flourish in moist environments and can be discovered near gutters and downspouts.

These algae will hold moisture, which, in turn, will affect the shingle composition. This means that they do not permit the shingles to dry out, which causes rapid deterioration in your shingles over time. This can eventually cause rot, making mold and mildew easy to grow on your roof.

Even though algae and black stains don’t pose an immediate danger to your roof, if you let them continue to grow and spread, they can lead to significant issues in the future. Because of this, you should look into a roof washing service to resolve the problem as soon as possible.   Proper roof maintenance will ensure that your roof’s structure will remain sound for years to come.

What causes streaks on shingles?

Most manufacturers of shingles have switched to producing shingles that contain asphalt but are primarily made up of fillers such as fiberglass and crushed limestone to save money. Unfortunately, these shingles promote the growth of algae. This is because this particular algae feasts on the limestone found in the shingles.

How to prevent black streaks on roof?

Because this algae is airborne, it is similar to you getting a cold. There isn’t much that you can do about it but keep it clean. As with a cold, you will need to wash your hands often. The same goes for your roof. This is especially true for those that have neighbors with black streaks, as your roof is sure to catch it.

If you are looking at your roof and noticing black streaks, you need to call a professional pressure washing company to properly clean the algae off. Furthermore, if you see streaks on your neighbor’s roof, but it hasn’t hit yours yet, you need to keep an eye on it because it stands to reason that a roof washing service will be needed soon.