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Syracuse Roofing: Article About Causes Of Roof Stains

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The roof plays a huge role in the appearance of a house, so it can really take a lot away from the curbside appeal when it's stained. Most homeowners agree that they don't like roof stains, but many aren't aware of what causes them. While it's easy to call a Syracuse roofing professional to remove stains, knowing what causes them is the first step to keep them from coming back.

The majority of roof stains on residential homes are the result of organic compound growth, such as algae, moss and lichen colonies. These organisms thrive on roofs that have a difficult time drying, including those that are located under trees or in areas that receive a lot of rain. The organic material is attracted to asphalt shingles because of the minerals that are used in the granules on the shingles' top layer. The most notable mineral is limestone, which is a food source for living organisms. This means that the organic compounds aren't just staining the roof; they are literally eating it. This can cause a number of roofing problems, including leaks that can accelerate the breakdown of the roof covering.

Algae is the most common of the three organic compounds that form on roofs.

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This is because it thrives on other organic materials besides limestone, such as pollen and dust. Since the food source for algae is so accessible, dampness typically triggers the growth of this organism. Algae stains are most common on the western and northern exposures of homes because these areas typically receive the most shade. It has to be dealt with professionally because it can grow inside, on top of and under the granules of shingles.

Moss can grow on a roof if the covering is left damp for extended periods of time, which often happens when a home is located under a tree that prevents the roof from drying completely. It typically starts growing between the vertical slots that are present on asphalt shingle roofs because water remains in these areas the longest. Since moss stores water, its presence can lead to leaks and a breakdown of the roofing material.

Lichen colonies are actually a fungus from the Ascomycetes family. This type of fungus typically grows alongside algae and results in a crust-like growth. Besides not being very attractive to look at, lichen colonies sprout root-like tentacles to better attach to surfaces. The roots penetrate deep into roofs, causing a breakdown of the material. They also have an oil base that hastens the breakdown process. Homeowners have to deal with lichen colonies quickly because they can spread fast.

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