A. J. Wells Roofing Contractors specialize in new roofs, roof repairs and roof maintenance services in the Jacksonville area. Our expertise includes full roof installations, roof tear-off and re-roofing, and leak repair.
Prevention, of course, is better than cure. A. J. Wells, your preferred Jacksonville roofer, advises that regular inspections be carried out to determine roof health. One aspect is the eradication of fungi, ideally done before small contaminations can grow into harmful colonies.
Mold and Mildew, a Health Hazard
Mold, mildew, moss and algae are all fungi, and all can contribute to health problems for those living or working below an infected roof. Dark, black mold, identifiable by its strong musty smell, isn’t just an irritant; it’s actually toxic to humans. Serious respiratory and allergic illnesses are both caused and exacerbated by exposure. People sensitive to molds may experience irritant effects, toxic effects and infection.
According to the Florida Department of Health, although a minor presence of moisture in the air is normal, if it’s left to grow and multiply the risk of potential health problems increases. Mold needs to eat to survive, and it’s perfectly happy eating your home if you allow it.
How Mold Can Damage Your Roof
Fungi can also cause your roof to rot. It’s unsightly, too, and both factors depreciate the value of your home. Let’s look at the most common culprits:
Algae — typically black or green in color — thrives in damp, well-shaded locations, so is most often found in areas which don’t get much sunlight. The spores grow in gutters and downpipes, and on and under both wood and asphalt shingles (often also called “shakes”), where they retain moisture. If left unattended for long enough, this will eventually cause the roof to rot completely.
Moss also booms in moist locations. As moss colonies grow and thicken, they retain more and more moisture, all of which is held against the surface of your roof. It isn’t long before natural roofing materials, particularly, begin to rot.
Mold is attracted to damp or humid environments, too, and spreads very quickly. Most commonly a black, brown or green slimy film (although also sometimes appearing as little spots or islands); the black variety is the most dangerous. It physically consumes several materials that are common building components, including wood, paper and drywall. If left unaddressed for even a short length of time, the entire structure of your home could be compromised.
Mildew is the powdery infestation that’s found in warm, humid environments. Most commonly black, green, pink or red in color, it usually indicates poor roof drainage. Trees hanging over the roof also encourage mildew, which can spread surprisingly quickly.
Mold and mildew, algae and moss can all hide in difficult-to-access crannies within your roofing system; in fact, they prefer such locations. An inspection carried out by A. J. Wells will ensure none of these harmful fungi are making inroads on your roof, or — if any are discovered — rectify the problem before it gets worse.
The Extra Mile
Fungi all release spores into the air, so infestations are common. Water is intended to drain off roofs, but if it’s allowed to seep into the interior of a structure, rather than being channeled away, roof fungus can enter, too. Completely hidden from view, in environments seemingly designed to allow fungus to thrive, colonies form and can immediately begin doing damage.
No spores can thrive without an advantageous living environment. Professional roof inspections not only discover infestations before they do damage; by noting potential failures in roof performance, then rectifying them, an inspection can also be integral in preventing the fungi from appearing in the first place. If that’s no longer possible, and the damage has begun, A. J. Wells, your roofing contractor in Jacksonville, will go the extra mile, fixing stucco damaged by moisture and fungi incursions caused by roof leaks.
By trimming trees so that they no longer touch your roof, you may be able to prevent algae from growing. Moss, mold and mildew are all discouraged by clean, free-flowing gutters and downpipes that allow moisture to drain properly. Maximize ventilation, particularly at ridge vents. The use of fungi-resistant roofing materials and techniques are recommended in Jacksonville’s hot, humid climate, and although they may represent a higher initial investment, that spend will pay off.