Cedar Roof Restoration
Cedar roofs are beautiful and practically the trademark of New England. They are also very practical because of the fact they can far outlast an asphalt roofing system. The only requirement besides proper installation is maintaining the cedar shingles.
The red cedar loses its red hue rapidly due to the natural degradation from the Sun’s UV Rays. Therefore a silver color is considered to be proper aging. Unfortunately it is rare for a roof to demonstrate this coloring, largely in part due to other natural entities. Algae, bacteria, mildew and fungus love to grow on the ever so porous cedar. You will be hard pressed to find a cedar roof anywhere in Massachusetts that is completely silver in color due to the overbearing nature of algae. Oftentimes you will see cedar roofs that have a black hue to them, this is a bacteria growth that some people confuse with the proper aging I spoke about above.
This bacteria is called Gleoecapsa Magma and has been around for thousands of years. It has a life cycle like every growing thing on the planet, and during this cycle the millions of present bacteria are in a constant state of growing and dying. All the while feeding on and decomposing your roofing system and also creating a nutrient base that lichen and moss will grow on and feed on.
Moss and lichen growth are very bad for any wooden roof largely due to the fact they decompose the roof and they cause over saturation of the shingles due to their absorbing properties.
It is imperative that you keep your roof clean and free from these growths if you want to get a decent life span out of your roof.
I get a lot of questions from my customers asking if they should seal their roof. My answer is always the same. There is a fine line with sealing a cedar roof because of the fact that you can hurt the roof by preventing its ability to breath. Cedar needs to breath or it could rot from moisture that can get trapped under and inside the shakes. Not only that but you will then be entering into a maintenance plan with your roof. It is far more cost effective to just clean it every 5 years or so than to re seal it every 2 years.
Zach Maynard- Cape Cod