I live in Seattle. My 6 years old composite shingles start to grow moss this year.

I read one post on YouTube that you can use a long zinc strip placed on top of your roof to prevent moss. I am wondering how effective it is. Another post mentioned that one strip can stop moss growing for about 15 feed down, so I need a few more strips to make whole roof protected.

Any thoughts and experiences? enter image description here

enter image description here

4 Answers 4


I live across the water from Seattle. I've seen several houses around here with zinc strips. They also have moss on the roof. I think there's no stopping moss in this climate on composite shingles.


Yes, it works - although most recommendations I've seen prefer zinc to copper (both more effective and cheaper). In fact, you see it all the time on older roofs underneath galvanized roof fixtures. For example, my neighbor's house:

zinc "streaks"

Basically, each rain washes metalic zinc down the roof and basically prevents any growth and lasts for decades. Copper does the same thing, although in that case it would be copper oxide washing down the roof. Note that if the house is brick, you should go with the zinc - copper oxides react with periclase in bricks and can cause damage.

If you want some more reading, there's a short piece on the Oregon State website.

  • Very nice answer. Will give it a try and post it again after a few months to report the results.
    – dave
    Commented Nov 8, 2015 at 22:48
  • The wash off from galvanized roof vent fixtures can go both ways though. I have seen plenty of cases where the fixture starts to rust and on light colored shingles you see rust colored stains down the roof. inspectapedia.com/roof/Roof_Rust_Stains.php
    – Michael Karas
    Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 4:28
  • @MichaelKaras - Yeah, I wouldn't do galvanized steel. Sheet zinc would be the way to do.
    – Comintern
    Commented Nov 9, 2015 at 5:00

I have a similar moss problem on my roof in the Berkshires, MA. Based on some online recommendations I placed a bunch of pennies on the roof - half under several shingles. I believe pennies are roughly 97.5% zinc. This seemed to work for a while but over time the pennies fell off or blew away whenever I cleared the roof of pine needles. I will try the zinc strip under the shingle approach. Thanks.


3M Scotchguard on shingles seems to work. here

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.