How to Keep Moss From Growing on Your Roof

If you’ve noticed moss growing on your roof, you may not be very alarmed. It’s just a harmless plant, right?

While a little bit of moss may not cause major harm immediately, untreated moss growth can do serious damage to a roof eventually. Unfortunately, from asphalt shingle roofs to metal roofs, no type of roof is immune to the problems moss growth can cause.

The good news is that a little bit of elbow grease and know-how can help you control moss. Check out our guide to learn how to keep moss from growing on your roof and how to remove it.

What Causes Moss to Grow on a Roof?

Before you learn how to keep moss off your roof, it’s important to understand how it gets there in the first place.


Moss usually grows in areas of the roof that are damp and shaded. Because moss retains water, it thrives most when the weather is cool and overcast.

Shade, Fog, and Cool Temperatures

Moss commonly grows on rooftops that are north-facing or shaded by large trees. It is also more common in humid climates, as well as areas that have frequent fog and moderate temperatures in the winter.

Cracks and Crevices

Moss often begins to grow in cracks between shingles, where moisture collects over time. This moss growth can quickly spread to the top of the shingles, growing into a thick layer that can be increasingly hard to remove.

Is it Bad to Have Moss Growing on Your Roof?

A little bit of moss growth may seem harmless. But because moss retains moisture and can spread quickly, it can cause costly damage to your roof. Unfortunately, homeowners can face many roof problems over time, and it’s important to take care of issues like moss as soon as possible.

Think of moss like a giant, ever-growing sponge. It is always wet, and it keeps your roof wet too. It moves underneath shingles as it grows, which can loosen them and spread moisture into the layers of your roof, including the underlayment and framework.

If left to grow for a prolonged period, moss can even creep into the home and develop mold, which could threaten the health of your family and the structure of your home.

How Much Does it Cost to Remove Moss from a Roof?

The cost of removing moss from a roof depends on your method. Moss removal can be done very inexpensively if you decide to handle it yourself, requiring only water, your choice of cleaning agent, and a few tools.

However, the process of removing mold from a roof can be dangerous and time-consuming, so you may want to hire a professional to take care of the task.

Normally, removing moss from your roof would fall under the services of a roof cleaning, which typically costs around $250 to $1000 for the average home. 

Hiring a roofing expert will ensure the moss is completely removed and will decrease the chances of it growing back. That means expert help can save you time, energy, and money in the long run.

How Do You Kill Moss Naturally?

Many homeowners are turning to natural, eco-friendly products to maintain and clean their homes, so why should the rooftop be any different? Choosing natural cleaning agents will protect you, the environment, and your property from the harmful side effects of certain cleaning chemicals. 

Moss can be removed naturally by using nature’s best cleaning agent: white distilled vinegar in water. Here’s how to do it:

  • Gather a bucket and spray bottle
  • Mix 1.5 to 3.5 cups of white distilled vinegar with 2 gallons of water
  • Wet the affected area of the roof with a hose
  • Pour vinegar and water into a spray bottle
  • Apply solution to the rooftop
  • Let solution soak for 20–45 minutes
  • Scrub area of the rooftop with a soft brush
  • Rinse off with the hose

How Do I Get Rid of Moss on My Roof Without Chemicals?

To follow up on the previous section, there are some other strong substances that you can use, which are not considered artificial. For example, you can get rid of moss using a mixture of water and either Dawn Ultra dish soap or chlorine bleach. Again, though, you can easily substitute these products with white distilled vinegar. 

Should I Remove Moss from My Roof?

Yes, if you notice moss growing on your roof, it’s smart to remove it as soon as possible. Getting rid of moss will prevent damage to your shingles, underlayment, framework, and walls of your home.

Softwash Hawaii Eliminates Moss, Mold, & Mildew on Your Roof

Our Softwash Hawaii Treatments will kill and eliminate existing moss (and other organic contaminants) on asphalt shingle roofs (and many other types). After a few minutes, the moss (and organic contaminants) on your roof will turn brown and die. At this point, the moss on your roof will start drying out and eventually detach from your roof. Once this occurs, the moss will naturally come off your roof either from normal rains or wind. In heavier cases of moss, it will be necessary to still physically remove the dead moss using a soft bristle broom or rinsing with a garden hose. Softwash Hawaii doesn’t guarantee prevention of future moss growth, but with routine inspections and treatments, can guarantee that organic growth will not be a problem in the future.

(Before and after comparison of moss growth after Roof Maxx treatment.)

Extend the Life of Your Roof

Now that you’ve learned how to safely remove moss from your roof, you may be looking for more tips for maintaining your roof.

Contact Softwash Hawaii today! 

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