When you think of algae, the last thing you probably think about is the siding on your home. Algae are a very real threat to your exterior siding and are very difficult to remove. The earlier you clean it off, the easier it will be to remove. If you don’t discover it right away, you will have to undertake rigorous efforts to effectively remove it. Understanding exactly what to look for and how to remove it will help you keep your siding as beautiful as possible for a long period of time. Algae can cause unsightly damage to your beautiful siding that will take away from its aesthetic appeal as well as value.
How Algae Grows on Siding
First, you probably want to know how algae even appears on your home. The trees, bushes and plants that surround your home give off airborne sugars. These sugars then travel to hard surfaces, such as your siding and create the environment that algae need to grow. With the proper combination of shade and moisture, your home will begin to grow algae. In other cases, it is simply dust and debris that contain the right ingredients to promote algae growth on your home.
Even if your siding is considered maintenance free, if you suspect algae growth on it, you need to remove it as fast as possible to prevent further damage. Vinyl siding is the easiest type to remove algae off of. If you own vinyl siding, chances are you wash it down at least once a year. The process to remove algae off of vinyl is exactly the same as you would wash it any other time. A garden hose and a mild soap should remove the unsightly algae from your vinyl siding.
If you find algae on your wood siding, you might have a tougher time removing it. The first step is to try to scrub it with a soft bristled brush covered in warm water and soap. This is the least invasive way to attempt to remove it. If you cannot remove all of it from your wood siding, you might have to turn to commercial cleaning products, such as oxygen bleach, to effectively remove it from your siding.
When you do clean algae off of your exterior siding, test a small area of the home first to ensure that the cleaner will not ruin your siding. Once it is considered safe, clean small areas of the siding at a time, rinsing it off as you go. This will prevent any harsh cleaners from drying on your home as well as prevent the algae from drying and sticking to other areas of your home.