Find Answers To Common Deck & Roof Cleaning Questions

For your convenience

We have listed the questions that are most commonly asked by our customers.

If you have a question that is not answered here, please

  • Use our contact form here.
  • Email us at info@rooftodeck.com
  • Call us toll free at 1-877-687-3639
    • 651-699-3504
    • 952-352-9986
    • 763-559-1832

We will be happy to answer your questions.


Is your company insured?
We are insured with workers’ compensation insurance and $2,000,000.00 in liability insurance. A certificate of insurance is available upon request.
How can I pay for your service?
We require a credit/debit card to be on file before we begin your project. If you prefer to pay by check, a check for 50% of the quoted price must be received before the work is scheduled. The balance is due the day we seal/stain your project.
When will you come out and measure my project?
We typically complete the quote within 1 or 2 days of the request. However, weather and other factors may cause a slight delay.
Do all exterior wood surfaces, even cedar and redwood, require regular maintenance and treatment?
Yes. While some species of wood are more resistant to decay than others, the natural resins in all species begin to deteriorate after time. This leaves the wood susceptible to cupping, cracking, warping and splitting. Unprotected wood is also susceptible to moisture, algae, mold and moss.
Will the sealer/stain get on our clothes after the sealer has dried?
Our sealer will not stain clothes after it has dried. However, dirt will collect on the surface of the deck, handrails and benches. If clothing makes contact with these surfaces, the dirt will transfer to your clothing.
How often will our wood need to be re-stained and re-sealed?
We warranty horizontal surfaces for 2 years and vertical surfaces for 4 years. Click here for limited warranty details (with the exception of hardwoods and newly built decks).
Do you do any sanding?
Typically, no. If wood is properly cleaned, sanding is not required and is not recommended. The whole idea is to preserve the wood. Removing wood by sanding does not extend the life of the wood, it shortens it. However, for painted decks sanding is required.
What are the fuzzies on my wood?
When wood is washed, some of the lignen in the wood is washed away. Lignin is the glue in the wood that holds the wood fibers together. When the lignin is washed away the wood fibers have a tendency to stand up. This is normal and is expected. In time (months) the fuzzies will separate and float away. Sanding is not encouraged or recommended.
Why does the sealer/stain have a smell?
Sealers have a distinctive smell to them until they have fully dried. Just like your home will smell after a room has been painted or floors have been polyurethaned, sealers/stains also have a smell.
Will you be able to get all of the stain off?
We will try to get as much stain off the wood that we can without damaging the wood. When using a power washer to strip wood, there is no stopping where the stain ends and the wood begins. If high pressure is used, the wood will be damaged. We use low pressure only. We know that time will take the old sealer off. We would rather protect the wood for the long term than damage the wood for the short term.
What is causing my asphalt roof to have black streaks, stains and moss?
Your asphalt roof has a common algae growing on it called gloecapsa magma along with green moss. Once algae and moss are noticeable, it will quickly spread and darken to all areas of your roof.
Will the algae and moss harm my roof?
Algae is a problem because it will lead to moss and lichen. Moss and lichen grow roots into the granules causing them to lift. Removing the black algae streaks and stains will prevent the eventual growth of moss and lichen.
Should zinc strips be put on the roof to make the streaks go away?
Zinc strips will not eliminate streaking that has already occurred. Zinc strips were designed as a deterrent to keep the streaks from ever forming in the first place. Zinc strips have not proven to be completely effective. However, we are happy to install them if you would like them.
How long does it take to clean and seal my cedar roof?
Typically 2 days. Cleaning your roof usually requires 1 day. We then must wait for the wood to dry to a moisture content of 16%. We then seal and/or stain the roof with a high quality, water repelling, algae and moss resistant sealer that also protects the wood from the sun’s UV rays.
Will the process harm my roof, grass, plants or pets?
No. Our cleaning and wood brightening solutions are environmentally friendly and diluted when rinsed away. We guarantee that our process will not harm your grass, plants or pets.
How long will my roof stay moss and algae free?
We warranty our roof cleaning for 3 years. Click here for limited warranty details.
Why does my cedar shake roof need to be cleaned and sealed?
Your unprotected cedar shake roof is being attacked by a number of different sources. Some of these are tree sap, bird droppings, mildew, mold, algae, moss, lichen growth, and surface decomposition by sunlight and moisture. By removing these sources through cleaning with a specially formulated cleaning solution and then sealing/staining the roof with an algae and moss resistant sealer, you will extend the life of your expensive cedar roof.
How do you clean the roof?

After harnessing ourselves with ropes, we apply an environmentally friendly cleaning solution to the roof which will kill, loosen and lift the algae, moss, dirt and other contaminants that are damaging and marring your roof. The roof is then power washed to remove the dead moss, algae and dirt. A wood brightener is then applied to bring back the wood’s natural beautiful appearance.

What kind of sealer do you use?
We use a powerful oil-based formula engineered for pressure treated wood, redwood and cedar. It contains water repellants to seal water out and protect against cracking, splitting, warping and swelling. The sealer leaves a protective coating that resists moss and algae and protects against the sun’s UV rays.
Are older cedar shake roofs (like the roof on my house) stronger and better than the cedar shake roofs being installed today?
Yes. Unfortunately, the new cedar wood that is installed today is primarily young growth cedar trees. That means less of the wood used for cedar shakes and shingles is coming from those enduring, old growth trees that are harder and more resistant to rot and insects.
Will you replace missing and broken shakes?
When we return to seal the roof we inspect the cleaned surfaces to find any missing wood shakes. We replace those shakes. We also nail down any loose staples or nails.
Is there a permanent way to keep the algae and moss from returning?
Unfortunately, no. Like any exterior wood structure, maintenance is required to keep it structurally sound and performing as intended.