Natural Options For Cleaning Historical Clay Roofing Tiles

As an owner, you want to maintain your home’s value, appeal, and function. However, when it comes to historical homes, maintenance can be even more challenging. Originating around 10,000 B.C in parts of China and the Middle East, clay-roofing tiles quickly spread across the nations. Today, you can see these appealing tiles on both older and modern houses. Due to its incredible durability, long lifespan, and attractive design, it is easy to see why clay tiles are popular options for homeowners.

If you are living in a historical home with clay or metal tiles from a place like Metal Roof Outlet Inc, extra caution is imperative to protect the roof’s original beauty and artisanship. Using the following guide, you can clean and preserve your clay tiles.

Safety 101

As with any type of roof, safety is an important concern. Unfortunately, clay tiles can become incredibly slippery with just a small amount of moisture, so shoes with a rubber sole are imperative. Wear safety boots that offer a gripping sole to reduce the possibility of falls.

If possible, place sheets of plywood on sections to prevent damage to the clay tiles when walking across your roof.

In addition, before climbing on your roof, ensure your helper holds your ladder steady. Once on top of your roof, try to plant your feet on a dry surface. Then, you can coat your clay tiles using these natural cleaning solutions.

Baking Soda

If you have areas with light dirt, dust, and debris, baking soda is an effective option for removing this unwanted discoloration. While strong enough to remove dirt, baking soda is also a gentle ingredient that will not damage the clay or surrounding landscape. Combine the following in an outdoor pump sprayer:

  • 3 gallons of water
  • 3 cups of baking soda

Shake your sprayer to mix the ingredients. Be sure the baking soda dissolves into the water properly. While on your roof, pump the sprayer’s handle to create pressure. Then, use side-to-side motions to spray the clay tiles. Allow the solution to sit for 20 minutes before rinsing with your garden hose.


If you live in humid climates that see a great deal of warmth and moisture, you may develop patches of mold or algae on your roof.  At the sign of mold and algae growth, you may reach for the bleach.

Of course, bleach is an effective mold and algae killer, but it can also cause harm to your surrounding plants, grass, and trees. Chlorinated bleach also poses many health risks including irritation to your skin and eyes, allergic reactions, and possible respiratory problems.

To clean your clay roofing tiles and remove the harmful mold and algae from your home, consider vinegar. Combine the following ingredients in your outdoor sprayer:

  • 2 gallons of hot water
  • 2 gallons of white vinegar

Since vinegar contains many acidic properties that are naturally antibacterial and antiviral, it safely kills mold and algae growth.

Wear safety goggles, rubber gloves, and a disposable respirator mask. While you are outdoors, breathing in mold or algae is still toxic to your health.

Using your sprayer, apply a thick coat of the vinegar solution to any areas with mold and algae. Allow the vinegar to soak on these patches for 30 minutes. In most cases, you will only need to rinse the excess off with a garden hose. However, for stubborn areas, use a scrubbing brush. To prevent damage to your historical home’s clay roof, use a soft-bristled brush to clean.

Your historical home was most likely a large expense. To maintain your home’s appeal and protect your investment, proper cleaning and maintenance is key. With this guide, you can clean your home’s clay roofing tiles naturally. 

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