How Will I know if a Roof Cleaning Contractor Will Use Bleach on My Roof?

If the Contractor DOES NOT tell you up front that they are NOT using bleach, then they are probably using bleach. Roof cleaning contractors who use bleach often don't advertise or tell you that they use bleach because they know homeowners don't want bleach used around their homes. Even when asked directly, some may still deny that they use bleach. Be insistent about your need to know. Many contractors who use bleach use the term "Soft Wash". Here are some other clues:  

  • If they tell you that they follow the shingle manufacturers (ARMA) recommendations, they are using bleach.  
  • If they tell you they use sodium hypochlorite (or SH for short), they are using bleach bleach
  • If they tell you they will water down, cover, or spray your plants during the process, they are using bleach.
  • If they tell you they use of a runoff recovery system to suck up the runoff, they are using bleach.
  • If they tell you their 'soaps' breakdown into SALT, they are using bleach. 

Many roof cleaning contractors who use chlorine bleach will mix up their own homemade formulas. They mix chlorine bleach with an array of varied chemicals such as phosphates, dish detergents, laundry detergents, assorted surfactants, and ODER-MASKING SCENTS to HIDE THE SMELL FROM YOU of the main ingredient - BLEACH! These haphazard chemical concoctions call into question product reliability, stability, safety and consistency across the board. 

Chlorine bleach has an intense chemical odor.  The toxic fumes can drift as far as a block away, exposing your neighbors as well.

“Chlorine gas can be recognized by its pungent, irritating odor, which is like the odor of bleach. The strong smell may provide adequate warning to people that they are exposed. When chlorine gas comes into contact with moist tissues such as the eyes, throat, and lungs, an acid is produced that can damage these tissues.”

— Centers for Disease Control and Prevention