When you have a tile roof, proper care is essential for keeping your roof in good condition. Unfortunately, many homeowners don't understand the best methods for caring for the tile without causing further damage. If you're hoping to keep your roof clean, you might be trying to decide between a pressure washer and soft washing. Many homeowners don't realize the threat that pressure washers can pose to your tile roof's condition. Here's a look at a few reasons why you should avoid pressure washers when you're cleaning a tile roof.
Your tile roof's flashing serves as a vital part of the roof's waterproofing infrastructure. The flashing seals vulnerable areas, including the area around chimneys, seams, skylights, and more. When you use a pressure washer on a tile roof, the high pressure of the water can actually loosen or damage the flashing.
This can allow water to seep beneath the tiles. Over time, that water can not only damage the tiles themselves but also the sub-roofing. This is a serious threat to your roof's structural integrity, and should not be taken lightly.
That's why most roofing contractors recommend soft washing for tile roofing. There's no high-pressure damage risk for your flashing, which protects the roof from leaks.
Tile roofing is a bit more vulnerable to surface wear from pressure washers than other types of roofing might be. When you use a pressure washer to clean your tile roof, the pressurized water will actually erode the surface of the tile. This can create etched grooves in the tile, which forms a perfect place for moss, mold, and other threats to grow.
Additionally, the surface erosion on your tiles can also lead to discoloration. Your roofing tiles will start to appear dull and faded because the clean, flawless surface finish will become a series of grooves, scratches, and other similar abrasions.
Soft washing, on the other hand, uses low-pressure water with a mixture of detergents to clean the surface of your tiles. That means you don't have to worry about surface erosion, damage, and discoloration from your cleaning and maintenance efforts.
Especially if your home's tile roof is fairly new, the terms of the warranty are an important consideration when you're thinking about pressure washing. In many cases, pressure washing roofing tiles can void your warranty. This is even more likely when you opt to pressure wash the roof yourself. Pressure washing can introduce damage, which is considered self-inflicted if you do the job on your own. This renders your warranty null and void, which can be a costly result if something does happen to the roof that would otherwise be covered under that warranty.
If you have more questions, reach out to a local roofing contractor.