Asked on Apr 25, 2016

Zinc strips on roof to help with roof moss (do they work?)

Does anyone have direct experience with using zinc strips on a roof to prevent future moss? We recently treated the moss on our roof with Wet & Forget and while researching came across a product called Stainhandler zinc strips that are applied using clear adhesive caulk. (No nailing into the roof shingles needed.) The adv. says "EPA approved, and long term results (20 year or more protection from fungus, moss, mildew etc.)" I am also wondering if the caulk is likely to hold these strips on our 10 year old roof (other than the moss it is in really great condition) and to keep these strips in place in a rough and tumble country setting. Am I setting myself up for failure and constant re-caulking of them? Also do I place one strip at the top of do I have to place strips every so many feet down the roof. Advice/feedback please?
Roof moss on country setting roof building after two rainy summers.
The building.
Spraying Wet & Forget on roof to kill moss.
  18 answers
  • Alta Toler Alta Toler on Apr 25, 2016
    I had zinc strips applied to my roof and they do keep the moss at bay.They were slid under the edge of shingles, but were nailed in. Not sure about caulking them in. 50' of zinc was only about $25-30 at Home Depot. They could use self sealing nails to install. I thought they were worth it.
  • Alta Toler Alta Toler on Apr 25, 2016
    With your roof I think one strip at the top would take care of it. I have a hip roof so slightly different installation.
  • William William on Apr 25, 2016
    Any zinc strips will work. You would slip them under the shingles two courses from the hip of the roof. Use a putty knife to break the shingle seal, slip the strips under the shingles ( about 2" of the strip should show), nail the strip with a galvanized nail under the shingle every two feet ( so they don't slip out), caulk the nail heads with clear silicone caulk, press the shingle down. Do this the full length of the roof. Any tree branches or trees close to the house shade the roof and prevent it from properly drying allowing the moss to grow.
  • DORLIS DORLIS on Apr 25, 2016
  • Tootie Tootie on Apr 25, 2016
    Tootie Wi. we had the zinc strips but found out the wet and forget works very good. just mix it and spray it on
  • DORLIS DORLIS on Apr 26, 2016
    Just called my roofer who just finished putting on my new roof and he said they used architectural grade shingles which come with anti mold, moss, etc coating so would not need to treat them. They are covered by the warrenty. Make sure you keep moss, etc off shingle or insurance will not cover new roof. I learned the hard way.
  • Dra2688510 Dra2688510 on Apr 26, 2016
    buy some copper roofing flashing' cut grips and tuck it under this shingles on the top of the roof' when it rains the acid from the copper' will kill the Moss.
  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Apr 26, 2016
    And if your roof is dirty, he big box stores sell a wash for them! My new roof is zinc infused...and it is also a medium gray instead of white...won't show the dirt so easily. I also put up dark gutters and hubs had the drainpipes put down the side of the house instead of the front! Love everything! No more dingy looking gutters!
  • Molly F Molly F on Apr 26, 2016
    I saw them used on This Old House - but you have to use a high grade zinc strips. I believe they only used at the top of the roof but there is a lot of debate about weather they really do work - I just respray every year or so - works OK for me!
  • Karen Coulas Karen Coulas on Apr 26, 2016
    Our cottage is under the pines and moss is a problem. We put a strip called Moss Boss in when we put on new shingles. So far it works great (year 4).
  • Bill N Deb Miller Bill N Deb Miller on Apr 27, 2016
    all I know is my husband worked at an zinc plant. He ended up with zinc fever and became very ill and had to be hospitalised.Debbe
  • Barb Barb on Apr 27, 2016
    I have always sprinkled baking soda on our shed roof and porch roof. It looks funny for a couple days, but it kills the moss and it just blows away.
  • Sarah A. Victory Sarah A. Victory on Apr 28, 2016
    Baking soda works well on lots of unwanted greenery. Don't know how long your roof is expected to last but next time I am going w/a metal roof. I have had roofs cleaned in the past by a business w/some formula that wasn't suppose to be harmful to surrounding plants and that worked well. Good luck!
  • Cher Cher on May 01, 2016
    I learned of using zinc strips in a landscape designer collage class. When my roof was replaced several years ago (5 maybe?) from age and being covered in moss and lichen I told the roofer to include the strips. I'm not sure if they were adhered with cement or had a nail strip but they haven't moved and I haven't seen any trace of growth. It was so cheap it's worth the add to save the roof. You only need one strip near the top of the roof. Rain runs over the strip and the zinc affects the lower shingles. It makes the environment inhospitable for the lichen and moss to grow.
  • Dra2688510 Dra2688510 on Jun 19, 2016
    put copper strips under the first layer of shingles..when it rains the acid from the copper will kill the moss.
  • Clifton Smith-Shultz Clifton Smith-Shultz on May 26, 2018

    Zinc strips retard moss and lichen growth up to about 5 -7 rows of shingles; depending on the amount of shade and pitch of the roof.

  • TT TT on Aug 20, 2021

    Make sure if you negotiate the zinc, or copper, algae/moss preventative strips in your rreroofing job it really is zinc. And the roofers really put it up. And correctly. A big delay in my roof job has hit when the zinc didn't show up with my paid for materials. Then the roofer saying he'd put it up later!

    I think he will have it by Tuesday and am paying an expert to watch them for that and other promised things included in price. They knew I'd not be up on the roof watching them,.

  • Betheacyn Betheacyn on May 21, 2022

    I live in Portland OR in a late 70's kind of contemporary home with some large areas and small areas of roof facing east and west. I have concrete tiles that started out with a clay coating on them, but that is another story. 2 years ago, after cleaning the roof of all dirt and moss, I put zinc strips from Home Depot on the highest spot of all areas. It did not work in any area. I was just up on the roof, and moss has grown into all the abutments between the tiles and on the front of every tile run across the roof. We get a lot of rain and very little sun for 6 months so it is asking a lot. I'm off to buy something to spray. Argh.