FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

FAQs

What are the ugly black streaks on my roof? 

Your roof is not dirty it’s infested with bacteria! Those unsightly black streaks are a form of bacteria, thriving and feasting on your roofing surfaces. The bacteria’s scientific name is "Gloeocapsa Magma”, GM for short. The bacteria spores spread by air, with the micro-organisms feeding on the limestone fillers found in shingles.Typically this is found on the north and west sides of roofs which receive less sun, and any shady areas that tend to stay wet longer because of overhanging tree branches. Accumulation of the bacteria starts to show as the ugly black spot, then streaks on your roof. The bacteria colonies turn black as their outer coating turns hard to protect itself against the sun's UV rays.  


As the bacteria colony grows, it lengthens and streaks down the roof due to gravity holding more moisture on the roof, and accelerating the bacteria growth. This provides an excellent environment for algae, mold, mildew, moss and lichen to soon follow! It is a viscous circle of roof destruction, decay…usually resulting in a dramatic drop in your residential or commercial property’s value and curb appeal. 


A roof treatment from MagicClean SoftWash will restore your curb appeal, raise your property's value, lower your energy costs, reduce respiratory irritants outside and eventually inside your home or office. Did I mention a roof treatment will pay for itself in reduced summertime cooling bills and less frequent roof replacement?  


Selling your home? A roof and exterior treatment can also make for better photos for your listing and reduce Days On Market. Remove one of the major buyer objections to purchasing a home, and get to the closing table faster because your home is clean and pristine!   


Should I replace my roof, or have it cleaned? 

Caution! Be careful of whom you ask this question. The roofer and the supplier of the shingles will advise replacement and the cleaner will advise that you clean it. Let’s do the math: a $12,000 roof replacement will be $6,000 in shingles and $6,000 to the roofing company for labor (tear off and installation). The investment to clean your existing roof will be around 1/12 the cost of replacement, or $1,000 for this example ...and the cleaning pays for itself. You will recoup the investment through lower energy bills associated with summertime cooling expenses and only cleaning stops the bacteria that is consumes your roofing material  requiring a premature roof replacement. If your roof shingles are still under their warranty period (typically 25 to 40 years) and still in good shape, call us to have them treated and cleaned, which will immediately put an end to the ongoing damage. If there are any leaks due to minor shingle damage or a few missing shingles, call us anyway, as we can refer you to an expert licensed and insured roofing company in your local area.  


Is cleaning my roof merely a cosmetic repair? 

NO. The black streaks will prevent your shingles from deflecting the sun properly and can increase your cooling costs. Also, since the algae is feeding on the limestone in your shingles, it is slowly breaking them down. By not cleaning your roof, you are reducing the life of your shingles by up to 50%.   


Will you damage my roof with high pressure? 

NO. We do not use a pressure washer at all while treating your roof. We use a specialized LOW PRESSURE delivery system designed to gently clean the algae from the surface of your roof, similar to an agricultural spraying system. Our system uses no more pressure than your garden hose! We simply apply the cleaner, allow it to dwell and rinse it clean. After the treatment is complete, we feed and fertilize your plants and landscaping.  


How much will it cost to get my roof cleaned? 

Each roof treatment is different, and many factors are taken into consideration when developing a quote: pitch of the roof, square footage, degree of black stains, is moss and/or lichen present, perimeter landscaping, accessibility, water spigot pressure, etc. An average roof cleaning and treatment with the 5 year "spot free” limited warranty is certainly far more cost effective than a roof replacement, and when you consider the documented fact that a softwash treatment lasts about 6X longer than that of pressure washing, softwashing your roof becomes an even greater value. Beware of the lowest bidder! 5 Star and Authorized soft wash professionals like MagicClean SoftWash are often not the lowest bidder because they consistently provide the highest level of homeowner protection, value, excellence in customer service and daily act as the standard bearers for the roof and exterior cleaning industry.    


Do you offer partial cleaning on just the bad areas? 

Yes, we can. MagicClean SolftWash understands that certain cleaning needs may apply, such as touching up only the front visible roof to increase the curb appeal for a home that is for sale. But it is highly recommended to avoid a partial cleaning and treatment. The un-treated sections most likely already have bacteria and algae spores you cannot see. These spores will travel to the treated roof sections and expedite contamination and re-growth. Another reality that we almost always encounter is that the now-treated slope(s) makes the rest of the roof appear dirty and dingy in comparison, as the cleaning effect is that stark and noticeable. Therefore, we do not offer the 5 year "Spot Free” limited warranty on partial cleanings and treatments. Our 5 year "Spot Free” limited warranty is transferable if a home is sold.  


Are you trained, certified and insured? 

Yes, our team members have completed certification training through SoftWash Systems, attended SoftWash hands on seminars and attend yearly SoftWash training events to stay current on all techniques, methods and SoftWash application methods. MagicClean SoftWash carries $1 Million Commercial Liability, $1 Million Workers Compensation insurance on ALL members of our staff for your added protection and peace of mind. This will be provided to you at the time of your consultation.  


Do you clean other things like playground structures, fencing and driveways? 

Yes. Our Softwash process provides fantastic results on vinyl siding, Hardie Plank siding, painted surfaces, playgrounds, pool decks and cages, sidewalks, canopy tents and just about all other exterior surfaces. Softwashing cleans and brightens without the destructive effects of a pressure-washer!  


Is it guaranteed to get my roof clean? 

Yes, or we don’t charge you. Our SoftWash Systems' proven process and proprietary solutions are guaranteed to successfully remove the ugly black streaks from your roof the day of cleaning and treatment. Our treatment provides a 99.9% kill ratio on bacteria algae, moss and lichen! Our 3 in 1 method cleans the roof of black streaks, provides a 99.9% kill ratio of all nasty organic bacteria, including the root, and inhibits the return of microbial growth. We are so confident in our process and methods that we provide a "Spot Free” 5-year limited warranty with every complete roof cleaning!  


Will the cleaning solution damage my plants, pets or family? Specific plant and property protection training has been completed and strict protocols are part of our everyday operating procedures! People, plants and pets remain safe! Our solutions are eco-friendly and bio-degradable. We do ask that pets and familiy members stay indoors until the job is complete. Some pets don’t like the garden hose, while others want to play in with it. Certainly, we understand people need to come and go. This is accomplished with a little prior coordination before the work begins. Pets are free to go outside once the job is complete and the work site is cleaned up and gates are closed.  


Our crew members are fully trained and employ strict protocol to protect your plants and property! We pre-wet all nearby plants and vegetation as a precaution, then continue to wet down all vegetation throughout the treatment process. We take plant protection one step further once the job is complete by applying a proprietary plant wash, containing plant nutrients and a chemical neutralizer, which we apply it to all nearby plants and vegetation as an added measure of protection  This Plant Wash and rinse is specially formulated to mitigate any potential concerns. Some customers say this is the first time in a long time their plants have been fertilized, watered and treated so well!  


MagicClean SoftWash takes every foreseeable precaution to ensure that your landscaping and personal property are protected and remain in the same condition or better than when we arrived at your home or office.     


How much pressure do you use on my roof and siding? 

Softwashing is THE alternative to pressure washing. First, we will never use a pressure washer or high pressure on your roof or siding. Our professional blending system is designed to mix and deliver a custom blended cleaning solution at 45-50 psi. That’s about the strength of your garden hose or a hard rain fall. Our 100% eco-friendly solutions do the work, gently and as recommended by roofing manufacturers.  


MagicClean SoftWash will clean all your exterior surfaces more safely and effectively than any other exterior cleaning company in Atlanta, period.   


Can bacteria, algae, moss or lichen cause roof damage? 

Yes! Un-treated roofs can lose up to 50% of their serviceable shingle life..The black streaks (bacteria) are eating the limestone in the shingle and causing erosion. Roof bacteria, moss, lichen and algae all cause granular loss from shingles. Bacterial growth (Gloeocapsa Magma) feeds on the limestone aggregate while the filament root systems digs deep into the shingle surface. Moss, fungus and lichen cause discoloration and small cracks in shingles. The resulting damage will absolutely reduce the life of your roofing materials. Granular loss also reduces reflection of the suns UV rays and protection from the elements,  one of the primary functions of any shingle.  The earlier your roof is cleaned and treated, the better! Our treatment immediately stops the accelerated damaging effect of microbial growth on all roofing surfaces. 


What Causes Roof Stains and Other Roof Issues? 

For the last 30 years or so, asphalt shingles have been manufactured using limestone as the base filler for added weight and to cut the expense of manufacturing. The ugly black streaks  you see on so many roofs in North Atlanta are a form of bacteria "Gloeocapsa Magma”, GM for short. This limestone filler just happens to be GM’s main food source! So the materials of most asphalt shingles actually encourage the growth and spread of this disgusting algae and bacteria. The longer the black streaks remain and grow, the more damage is done to your shingles. Put simply, the sooner your roof is cleaned and treated the better!  



SOFTWASH SYSTEMS  


What Is Softwashing? 

Softwashing is an alternative to pressure/power washing that does not make use of harmful high pressure. Soft washing thoroughly treats, cleans and sanitizes surface areas, while killing and eliminating the microbes that are the root cause of discoloration on roofing and various other structure surfaces.  


How Do I Know Softwashing Works? 

Softwashing was developed over twenty years ago. It has been extensively field-tested, and it has been utilized on such large and well-known Florida hotels such as Disney and Universal Studios. In addition, over 100,000 roofs have been effectively treated and cleaned utilizing soft washing protocols.   


Why Is Softwashing Superior To Pressure Washing? 

Softwashing kills 99.9% of bacteria and  eliminates the microbes that trigger staining, whereas pressure washing simply "cleans off' the surface layer,  moving these damaging microbes to other adjacent surfaces to regrow and thrive. Furthermore, soft washing does not make use of destructive high pressure, unlike pressure washing, and soft washing treatments last far longer than those of pressure washing treatments.  


How Long Will A Softwashing Treatment Last? 

Typically, a softwashing treatment will last up to 6x as long as pressure/power washing, before staining reoccurs. In many circumstances, our treatments last a considerably longer than that.  


Why Is It Important To Eradicate Microorganisms? 

Microorganisms such as mold, mildew, algae, lichen, and bacteria are accountable for staining on roofing systems and various other surface areas. In addition, byproducts of the metabolic activity of these microorganisms are acidic, and destructive to surface areas such as roof shingles. Eliminating these bacteria protects against staining, as well as enhances the durability of roof coverings, fencing, and also decks.  


Is Softwashing Safe? 

The cleaning remedies utilized in our SoftWash System are water-based, 100% biodegradable  and emit very low VOC (volatile organic compounds) discharges. Our cleansing solutions are also non-toxic, so no harmful chemicals are ever released into areas on, or around, your home or business during a treatment.


Is Softwashing Environmentally Friendly? 

Softwashing is much more eco-friendly as compared to pressure/power washing, for the following reasons: 

  • Every one of our treatment options are 100% eco-friendly.
  • Our cleaning solutions have extremely reduced VOCs.
  • We only use 1/10th the water of pressure washing 
  • Our treatments last up  to 6x longer compared to pressure washing, so cleaning is not needed nearly as often. 
  • Our softwashing formulations maintain and restore a myriad of residential and commercial construction products and surfaces, such as roof shingles, protecting and conserving      customer’s investments, while producing much less waste for area landfills due to roof, siding, gutter, fencing and deck replacements.   

What Types Of Surfaces Can Be Cleaned With Softwashing? 

In addition to roofing, we treat and clean all types of residential and commercial siding, brick, stucco, decks, fencing and concrete surfaces. There are very few surfaces that cannot significantly benefit from a soft washing treatment, both for restoration to its original condition and beauty, as well as to kill and eradicate 99.9% of the organic bacteria that infests and destroys those surfaces  


Is Softwashing Guaranteed? 

We fully warrant all our work. If any staining or new growth of bacteria returns on your roof within two years of our initial treatment, we will spot-clean those areas and eliminate the new growth at no charge. And as part of our Five-Year Spot Free Warranty, if any discoloration appears at any time within five years of our initial treatment, we will certainly spot-clean those areas for a prorated amount.