The Cost of Cleaning, Treating and Coating a Roof

All you need to know about the costs associated with having your roof tiles treated including materials, labour and time frames.

Roof Treatment

What the job entails

When hiring a professional roof coating/tile painting company the first step will be an initial site survey to check access to the roof and ensure the roof tiles are suitable for painting. The general condition of the roof will be checked too for safety reasons. Then the job will entail the setting up of the safety equipment such as scaffold towers or harnesses and roof ladders. Covers and tarpaulins will normally be placed over patios and flowerbeds to protect them and any broken or damaged roof tiles will be replaced. The roof will firstly be washed but before this the gutters will be removed from drainage pipes to prevent the muck from the roof blocking the drains. Once roof tiles have been pressure washed and all roof moss removed, the tiles with a fungicidal wash and two coats of roof coating are applied.

If you are considering having roof tile treatment, then there are some other related jobs you may consider doing at same time. For example, any broken or damaged roof tiles should be replaced before any roof coating or painting is carried out. In addition, you should also consider any other jobs that require scaffold at roof level, as you will already be paying for this so may as well make full use of it and take care of other minor roof repairs at the same time!

Roof coatings are coloured paint which help to seal the tiles and they are usually applied to improve the aesthetics of the roof. However, much like the painting of exterior brickwork, once you have done the job once, you need to continue repainting it regularly, though most paints/coatings should last 6 to 8 years. Though the job is mainly done for visual appeal, the roof will be thoroughly cleaned and have a fungicide applied as part of the job, so it will help if you experience a lot of moss growth and may even help to reduce leaking gutters with a better flow off the roof and no moss leading to blockages and overflows.

These types of paints/coatings should be applied to roof tiles in winter or during damp conditions as they may not cure properly. It is best to wait for the warmer, dryer weather in the summer months. Remember that a roof coating can make old roof tiles look much better, but is no substitute for a new roof if the tiles are well past their prime. In fact, if the roof is in poor condition, reputable companies will refuse to apply a coating and risk their reputation.

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Cost of having your Roof Tiles Cleaned and Sealed

The average cost to clean and coat a roof is typically around £1500-£2000 for a semi detached house with a gable roof. This price includes the roof being power washed, treated to prevent moss and two layers of coloured sealant applied. This average price can vary greatly depending on location, ease of acces, size of house, roof type, tile type and if a small or large company carry out the work.

A roofer will often charge around £150-£200 per day to coat a roof. Tradesmen will likely work in pairs in order to complete the job for safety precautions as well as to get the job done faster, as such you should expect to pay around £250 per day in labour costs. Day one usually starts with any required remedial work as well as cleaning and then applying the fungicide. Day two would then be coating the tiles with the coloured paint/sealant. Once the first coat is dry a second coat can be applied.

Below are some estimated costs of hiring a tradesmen to clean and coat a roof:

Roof Type House Type Avg. Cost Duration
Gable Roof Semi Detached £1000 2-3 days
Gable Roof Detached £1000 2-3 days
Hip Roof Semi Detached £1100 2-3 days
Hip Roof Detached £1200 3 days
Gable Roof with 2 Valleys Detached £1200 3 days
Hip Roof with 2 Valleys Detached £1400 3-4 days


Cost Breakdown

Individual costs for hiring a roofing specialist to clean and treat a gable roof on a semi-detached house - Total Cost: £1000

10%

Materials
£100

60%

Tradesmen
£600

30%

Scaffolding
£300

FAQ's

The actual time will vary depending on the size and type of roof but most jobs will take between 2 to 3 days. On day one the roof is cleaned thoroughly and the roof tiles are treated with fungicide. Any minor remedial work that is required will also be carried out on the first day such as re-pointing or replacing broken tiles.

On the second day the first layer of roof coating will be applied. If the weather is warm and dry the second will be applied later on the same day. However, if typical British weather, the drying time will be much longer the second coat will have to be applied the next day. But wet and windy weather will delay the job and really damp conditions make it impossible to correctly apply the coating.
Some modern coatings come with a 10 year guarantee, but this may be slightly optimistic based on the experiences of other homeowners! Expect 6 to 8 years being more realistic. Remember also that guarantees are only valid if the company is still in business (unless insurance backed), so a guarantee from a fly by night cowboy company is completely worthless! To avoid future problems stick to reputable companies with insurance backed guarantees that have a solid track record and history.
No, but it should reduce moss growth in the short term thanks to the fungicide treatment which is part of process. If your roof suffers from heavy moss growth you will likely still need regular treatments.
Assuming good access all-round the roof and standard concrete tiles in decent condition with no major remedial work required. Then an average quote would be around £2000. This quote would include pressure washing the roof tiles, treating the roof with a chemical fungicide to prevent moss growth and two layers of roof coating in a choice of colours.

It should be noted that although most contractors would likely carry out small remedial works to the roof as part of the job, if there is lots of additional work required, for example lots of missing or damaged roof tiles which need to be replaced and cemented in, there will be additional charges over and above the original quote and the job will also take longer to complete.
Most roof coating is done for cosmetic reasons, with some minor benefits due to a thorough roof cleaning and moss treatments being part of the job. However, there are some companies which promise greater insulation properties and lower heating bills amongst other things - this is unlikely to be true so caveat emptor! Despite the contrary claims made by aggressive salesman, there are no government grants for roof coatings at this time.

If you want to reduce heat loss through your roof, then additional loft insulation is the best option and this does often attract grants and incentives and can even be done for free depending on your circumstances. Before having your roof painted/coated, remember that once painted you will need to have it repainted at least every 10 years, whereas roofs can often last up to 70 years without major remedial work if you don’t mind that weathered look!