Can Soft Washing Remove the Black Streaks on My Roof?

If you live in a hot, humid, or moist area, you’ve probably noticed an abundance of black streaks lining your or your neighbors’ roofs. These streaks can be unsightly, and besides ruining your home’s curb appeal, they also might threaten your roof’s lifespan. Researching has likely led to the discovery of a soft wash roof cleaning, but how effective can this cleaning method actually be for your roof? As our roofing experts attest, soft washing is one of the best ways to combat black streaks, and homeowners want to be proactive before they begin to take over their roofs.

What Are Those Streaks?

Is it dirt? Is it dust? Are there dead bugs? The first thing most homeowners want to know is what exactly they’re dealing with when it comes to these black streaks. Black streaks on your roof indicate algae growth and, more specifically, algae called gloeocapsa magma. This algae thrives on the moisture and composition of the shingles on your roof. It usually starts as a small patch that grows over time. 

Typically, gloeocapsa magma is blue-green algae, but it adapts to the sun’s UV rays by turning a much darker color while exposed. Because it’s a black algae, the species can spread all around your roof, even if it’s only visible by a few darker streaks lining your roof. 

How Are the Black Streaks Affecting My Roof?

Besides the hideous look to your roof, what else do black streaks mean for the condition of your roof? Gloeocapsa magma feeds off your roof, taking food from the limestone particles on your shingles — which protects your roof from sun and weather damage. This can raise your energy bills while weakening the strength of your asphalt shingle roofs over time. Over long periods, the algae can ruin your roof so much that roof manufacturers will have no choice but to replace the entire roof. 

How to Get Rid of the Black Streaks

Homeowners shouldn’t panic if they find black streaks on their roofs, especially if they aren’t too large and don’t encompass most of the roof. Black streaks are fairly common in warm, moist areas, and the algae spread easily through wind, weather, and even your clothing. So it’s easy to see how and why the algae appear on your roof.  

The only time you should panic is if you aren’t considering cleaning methods or ways to remove the algae from your roof. There are a few effective methods, including DIY cleanings using garden sprayers and calling on professional house washing and cleaning services to remove the roof staining from algae. Soft washing is one of the most effective cleaning methods for your roof, so homeowners should consider asking their local roof cleaning companies about how this method can help them.


Prevention is the best way to avoid algae in the first place. Copper is toxic to algae, and you can line your roof with a few strips on the ridge. You can also purchase zinc strips created specifically to eliminate algae growth on roofs.

Algae-Resistant Shingles

More recently, roof material manufacturers have been focusing on creating asphalt shingles resistant to algae. Considering asphalt shingles are the most common roofing material, creating an algae-resistant mix can help prevent growth on plenty of homeowners’ roofs.


Cleaning methods get algae off your roof and help them stay off. You can DIY roof cleaning or avoid the home improvement project by getting a professional soft washing. Either way, you want to avoid getting a pressure wash or power washing your roof. These methods are far too risky and can damage your roof more than the algae.

How Can Soft Washing Get Rid of Black Streaks

Soft washing is the kryptonite of algae on your roof and is a safe and effective method to combat growth. Soft washing combines cleaning and prevention methods by getting rid of the shingles while discouraging growth. The cleaning agents kill the algae right in its spot, and every remnant is removed with the deep cleaning power of a soft wash. A good roof cleaning service can help get you the soft washing you need and protects your roof for almost three times longer than any other type of cleaning.

Remove Black Streaks With Our Professional Roof Cleaning Services

Grime Stoppers experts have experienced plenty of roofs, and we know how difficult those dark streaks can be to get rid of. Fortunately, our roof cleaning services in and around Owensboro, Kentucky, specialize in removing algae growth and providing a host of other home improvement and roofing services. Reach out to us today to get rid of gloeocapsa magma for good and restore the beauty of your roof.