Cedar roof restoration

Cedar Roof Cleaning and Maintenance

Your cedar roof can be the best feature on your home’s exterior or your biggest headache.

Without proper maintenance you could start to notice curling and cracking shingles within 5 years of installation. This does not mean the roof is bad or need to be replaced but should be inspected and repaired. If you keep up with maintenance on your Cedar shingles it can easily outlast a conventional asphalt roof, I have seen cedar roofs 60 years old and still look great. This is why it is important to maintain your roof.
What is our process for maintaining cedar roofs?
Our 3 step Clean, Repair, protect, process is guaranteed to leave your roof looking great while extending the life. Here are the steps we use to restore cedar roofs.

#1 Clean- Our first steps in cleaning cedar roofs is getting the roof ready for the cleaner to be applied. We use harnesses, ropes and safety studded shoes to move safely around your roof. Once we are hooked up we began spraying the shingles with our wood restoration solution to loosen all the moss, lichen, and dead wood fibers on the shingles. After a sufficient dwell time we began the washing process.

We use a pressure washer with 1000-1500 psi and 5 gallons a minute flow to rinse off the shingles. This removes all of the algae and dead wood fibers leaving the shingles looking great.

wisconsin cedar roof cleaning

The following step to cleaning the roof is brightening the cedar shingles. This is a very important step in the cleaning process. The wood brightener does more than bring the shingles to a beautiful color, it neutralizes the wood and opens the pores so the sealer/wood preserver can penetrate even deeper. Once we brighten all of the cedar shingles the roof has to dry .
On the left is cleaned shingles and on the right side is when the wood is being brightened.

Cedar shingle cleaning

#2 Repair- The repair step is when we go over every shingle to determine what needs to be replaced. The main reasons cedar shingles need to be replaced is due to curling, cracking and decay. This happens when the wood goes through a continuous wetting and drying out cycle. Basically the shingle gets completely saturated with water then the sun dries it out time and time again causing the curling and cracking. This also breaks down the wood which causes the decay and once it reaches a certain point the shingle has to be replaced because it’s no longer doing its job.

We remove all the shingles that are cracked, decayed more than ¾ of an inch off the bottom and any thinned shingles. Once all the shingles are removed we replace them all with new shingles. New shingles will stick out color wise from older shingles. But this has to be done to keep your roof maintained and working properly. The new cedar shingles will all blend eventually, this may take a season or two.

Cedar roof repairs Wisconsin
#3 Protect- This is the part some think is not necessary but truly is if you would like to prolong the life of your cedar roof. There is no way around it if you’re looking to have a roof that sheds water and looks great for many years to come.

First we protect surrounding areas from overspray with taping and tarps when needed.

Then we treat the cedar shingles with an oil base wood preservative that soaks deep into the shingles to protect from uv rays and water penetration. We use an airless sprayer with low pressure and large tips to generously coat the roof to where no more oil will penetrate the cedar shingles. Once the roof is treated with the preservative the roof is now completely protected and restored to its finest state.
This process is the only way to restore and protect your cedar shingles properly. We use oil base preservative because of its penetration qualities while other contractors use water base that sit on top of the shingles. Not saying that is wrong as long as the cleaning and repairs are done correctly the finishes may vary.

Cedar roof staining wisconsin
How often do I have to have my cedar roof maintained?

This is one of the most common questions we are asked and the answer is every 3-5 years. This time varies due to certain exposures to the sun and other elements. The sun is the biggest enemy to your cedar roof. A lot of people think it’s the algae growth but it’s the suns uv rays that really batter the shingles. Heavy Moss growth is not good but the sun works faster at destroying your cedar roof.

So with at being said the areas that get a lot of direct sun you will see the stain/preservative color fade faster than areas in shade.


If you have any questions about your Cedar roof or Cedar siding feel free to give me a call or email.


Leave a Reply