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Time to clean your Roof!

Fall is in the air! It’s that time of year again when rainy season is coming to an end, the humidity is dropping and there are (somewhat) cooler days in sight. It is also that time where neighborhood home owner’s associations send out letters as friendly reminders to have your homes in order, yards nice and manicured, and last but not least, roofs cleaned!

While we only manufacture the tile, we do have a few recommendations for cleaning your tile roofs. First of all, hire a professional! Getting on your roof can be a dangerous task and we certainly don’t want you to get hurt. Not to mention, improperly walking on your roof can cause damage and even void your warranty.

Not every roof needs to be cleaned every year. Some roofs may go a couple years before needing to be cleaned. But in South Florida, there are harsh weather elements such as humidity, wind, rain and heat allowing mold and mildew to build up faster than normal. Properly maintaing your roof and having your roof cleaned periodically is key to having your roof look its best.

We have listed our recommendations on properly cleaning your roof in our Roof Maintenance Guide found under the Technical Information portion of our website. After reading more about roof cleaning and proper maintenance, if you still have questions feel free to contact one of our sales reps. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have!

 

F-TAUP-AA-TS

 

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Don’t Forget Your Roof When Spring Cleaning

Spring has officially arrived! Yes, we know Florida doesn’t really experience seasons in their true nature (and this winter we are extra thankful to be in the sunshine state!), but if nothing else, the arrival of spring is a good reminder that it is time for some deep cleaning around the home.

Spring cleaning likely brings thoughts of organizing closets, washing rugs, and cleaning behind the refrigerator. While all of that is important, don’t forget the outside of your home–specifically, your lovely roof! Roofs are a big ticket item when it comes to your home, and it is important to get as many years out of it as you can. A little TLC every so often will help your roof last as long as possible.

The Florida climate is conducive to the growth of mildew and algae on just about any surface. Dust and dirt particles can accumulate on your roof, facilitating the growth of mildew and/or algae on the tiles. Trees are often a culprit — whether providing shade that keeps moisture on the roof or actual branches dropping debris. By keeping the trees surrounding your roof trimmed, you will help avoid (or at least delay) the growth of these unwanted visitors. Perhaps tree trimming should be added to your list of spring cleaning activities as well.

A roof in need of pressure washing to remove the mildew build up.

A roof in need of pressure washing to remove dirt and mildew build up.

If you have spotted mildew and/or algae on your roof tiles, have no fear. A little spring cleaning through pressure washing should have it removed in no time. Though we only manufacture the tile (and do not provide installation or maintenance services), we do have several recommendations on how to best care for our products.

First and foremost, safety first! We recommend hiring a professional to do the pressure washing because walking on roof tiles can be tricky. Not to mention — you don’t want to take a chance in cracking a tile which could possibly void your warranty.

When pressure washing, ensure the professional abides by the correct machine settings, cleaning mixtures and techniques that are appropriate for tile. You can find all of our recommendations and tips in our Roof Maintenance Guide found under the Technical Information portion of our website. While you likely don’t need to pressure wash your roof every year, we hope that you will keep our thoughts in mind each time you do.

You can also reference this blog post on roof maintenance. If you still have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to your local roofer or Entegra Sales Rep. At Entegra, we take pride in delivering a great product, resulting in beautiful roofs. We hope you’ll keep your roof in sparkling condition with an annual spring cleaning!

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Efflorescence: What you Need to Know

Every now and then a home owner (while admiring their beautiful new tile roof) will notice the appearance of a white, chalky substance on the surface of a tile or an overall softening of color. While this can be alarming to a home owner who just installed a new roof, we assure you it’s no reason for concern. What you are seeing is called Efflorescence, a surface condition caused by the chemical nature of cement. As with any concrete product, efflorescence is a possible occurrence with your new roof, but we’re here to tell you some GREAT news….Efflorescence is only temporary!

What is efflorescence, you ask? Efflorescence is a natural process when water (such as rain, moisture, dew or even a sprinkler) mixes with the free lime contained in cement. This combination produces a series of chemical reactions which release calcium hydroxide, creating a crystalline salt deposit on the surface of the tile. This salt deposit can give the appearance of an overall softening of color or even a white chalky substance in concentrated patches. Unfortunately, this is an unavoidable process that occurs in all concrete products where cement and other raw materials are used.

efflorescence tile

So what can you do about it? In a nutshell, just wait! We are unable to predict how long efflorescence may last. The best thing you can do is to let this natural occurrence run its course. Rainwater mixed with carbon dioxide will wash away the salt deposits, and the natural color of the tile will reappear unharmed. Rest assured that efflorescence in no way affects the integrity of your roof tile.

If you would like to read further about this temporary surface condition, there is a great resource here.

 

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Celebrate “National Roof Over Your Head Day” with a cake, on us.

There are quite a few silly “National _____ Day’s” on the calendar each year, and “National Roof Over Your Head Day” just might be one of them. But having a roof over your head means that your family and home are protected from the outside elements. Reason enough to celebrate, if you ask us. Today is a good reminder to be grateful for something that we so often take for granted.

In honor of this nationally recognized holiday, we’d like to celebrate by offering our advice on how to care for this vital piece of your home. Here are our recommendations:

{Safety first!  Always hire a roof cleaning professional or contractor to clean your roof to ensure your safety and to prevent damage to your roof tiles.}

Here in the southeast, the weather elements can be harsh. With high temperatures, abundant sunshine, excessive rain and extreme humidity, unfortunately the southeast is conducive to the growth of mildew and algae. A common misconception is that algae and mildew grow directly on the roof tiles. However, mildew and algae do NOT grow directly on roof tiles, but rather on the dust particles and other materials that accumulate on the tiles over time.

So how can one prevent the growth of these unwanted visitors on the roof? Pressure washing. Pressure washing will temporarily remove algae and mildew.  When washing, use a mixture of 10% chlorine to water, and use no more than 1200 psi to ensure no damage is caused to the roof tiles. Keep the nozzle of the washer at least one to two feet from the tile at all times.

In order to maintain the vibrancy in the color of your tiles after pressure washing, the roof should be primed with a clear water-based sealer and followed by an application of 100% clear acrylic sealer.

How often should you pressure wash? That depends on your roof and its surroundings. There are many factors contributing to why certain roofs are more susceptible to mold, algae and mildew than others. The location of your roof is the key ingredient. Is it frequently shaded? Does it get sunlight? Is your roof surrounded by trees? What about your proximity to bodies of water? These are elements that play a factor in how often you may need to clean your roof.

For more detailed information on roof tile maintenance and our recommendations, please visit our Maintenance Guide here.

If you’re thankful to be celebrating National Roof Over Your Head Day, resolve to keep your roof in tip-top shape by maintaining your concrete tile roof.

And if the roof over your head is an Entegra roof, we think this is cause for even more celebration. Snap a picture of your roof and email it to mstracuzzi@rooftile.com to be entered into this week’s drawing of a $25 Publix gift card to buy yourself a cake to celebrate National Roof Over Your Head Day! Winner will be notified at 5pm Friday. Good luck!