The Best Post Hole Diggers of 2021

Does your landscaping project have you feeling like you’re in a hole? The solution is finding the best post hole digger for your needs and budget.

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The Best Post Hole Diggers Option

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Building fences is tough. Between handling heavy posts and awkward panels, just shuffling the materials around your yard can be exhausting. And when it comes to digging the post holes, the amount of hard work involved often surprises first-time fence builders.

But there’s a solution to all the hole-digging troubles: a post hole digger. The best post hole diggers can make excavating appropriately sized holes at the proper depth a faster and less arduous task.

Whether you choose a powered or manual option, these tools will enable you to dig straight down into the soil without digging out large, round craters that require refilling once you finish. They’ll save you both time and stress on your back.

  1. BEST OVERALL: XtremepowerUS 1200W 1.6HP Electric Post Hole Digger
  2. BEST MANUAL: AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger
  3. BEST GAS: ECO LLC 52cc 2.4HP Gas Powered Post Hole Digger
  4. BEST ELECTRIC: XtremepowerUS 1500W Electric Post Hole Digger
The Best Post Hole Digger

Photo: amazon.com

Types of Post Hole Diggers

There are plenty of tools to help dig holes, from standard shovels to heavy-duty excavators, plus multiple types of post hole diggers to choose from. Below is a breakdown of the most common types of post hole diggers, with an explanation of how they work and what it takes to operate them.

Manual

Manual post hole diggers are the most common and traditional option for digging holes for fence posts, mailboxes, and lots of other projects. They look similar to giant salad tongs, with a pair of long handles and two hinged scoops on the end.

Manual post hole diggers work by thrusting the scoops into the soil, working the handles back and forth a few times to loosen dirt and rocks, and then scooping them out of the hole. Some post hole diggers come with measurements on the handles to track progress quickly.

This option is the most portable choice, and the easiest to operate—in theory. But the effort required to dig deeper and deeper can wear out the user’s hands, arms, and back.

Gas

When it comes to boring deep holes in a hurry, a gas-operated post hole digger is the way to go. These machines have gasoline-powered engines mounted on top, similar to those found in weed whackers, chainsaws, and lawn mowers.

The engine turns a large auger, allowing it to bore deeply into the ground. On the way down, the auger excavates some soil and rocks from the hole, but it also loosens the rest, to enable clearing the hole relatively easily with subsequent passes.

There are occasions where a gas-powered post hole digger will bury itself in the ground, catching on a tough root or rock. In those cases, removing the digger can be a bit more challenging, so it’s something to keep in mind.

Electric

Electric post hole diggers work similarly to gas-powered models, but with an electric motor to power the auger. The electric motor is quieter and creates none of the exhaust fumes of a gas option. They’re often lighter, more convenient, and require much less maintenance, but that can come at the cost of power.

Not only are electric post hole diggers more convenient than gas-powered ones, but there are also battery-powered electric models available. These options blend the portability of a gas digger with the weight and convenience of an electric tool. When tackling post holes to fence in a smaller yard, a battery-powered post hole digger is certainly worth considering.

What to Consider When Buying the Best Hole Digger

Before selecting a post hole digger, there are a few factors to think about. First, make sure the digger has the power to get the job done. It also has to be light enough to handle when working alone. This section will highlight those areas as well as point out some other factors to keep in mind when choosing the best post hole digger for your project.

Engine or Motor

Some soils and surfaces are easier to dig into than others. When using a powered post hole digger, be sure that it is capable of handling the task at hand—much of that depends on the engine or motor (also known as a powerhead) that powers the auger.

Gasoline powerheads come in engine sizes expressed in cubic centimeters (or cc for short). Look for a model 40cc or larger. Electric powerheads usually come with information about wattages and amps. Models with 1,200 watts or more work best; also be sure the motor has at least a 10-amp motor to prevent it from overheating.

For powerhead style, look for a model with at least 1½ horsepower. If the soil is tough, compacted, or full of stones, consider a higher horsepower option—closer to 2¼. It might be challenging to get that type of power from an electric post hole digger, so beware that tougher terrain may require a gas-powered model.

Auger

Another point to understand when choosing a powered post hole digger is the auger. The auger is the spindle that bores into the ground. It looks like a drill bit. Augers come in a few sizes, so it’s essential to choose the proper size for the project and machine. Choosing the proper auger size depends on the project. Any projects requiring concrete, like posts for taller fences and deck footings, require a large auger.

An 8-inch auger will allow for placing a 4×4 post in the ground with enough room for concrete to anchor it. A 12-inch auger, best attached to a heavy machine, will create a hole large enough for a 6×6 or 4×6 post and plenty of concrete. Smaller augers, like 4- or 6-inch options, are appropriate for light-duty work like mailboxes as well as metal fence posts for chain-link fences.

Keep in mind that the larger the auger, the more friction it will create while boring into the ground. Only a powerful engine can turn a 12-inch auger in densely compacted soil, where a 4-inch auger might seem to zip into sandy terrain with even light-duty models.

Pro tip: If digging a hole is proving difficult, consider starting with a smaller auger first, then swap in larger augers as the job progresses. Save time by digging all holes with the smaller auger and then coming back through with the larger auger.

Depth Capacity

One of the most important factors to think about when digging a hole is how deep it will need to be. Tall privacy fences create a lot of leverage in windy conditions, and they can easily uproot a shallow post. Also, installing a fence post above the frost line could cause the ground to heave it up and out of the hole in cold weather.

Most manual post hole diggers have long handles that enable digging down to depths of around 4 feet, which is code in many areas for deck and fence posts. A depth of 4 feet will also bring you below the frost line in all but the most frigid climates.

Powered DIY post hole diggers rarely come with 4-foot augers, but there are extensions that will increase the depth capacity. Start slow, though. Burying an auger 4 feet deep into the ground will make it very difficult to remove, so clear the hole out every 6 inches or so.

Weight

While power, auger size, and depth are important, none of them matter more than weight to safely or easily operate the post hole digger. The user needs a machine he or she can handle and remove from the hole even when it’s loaded with soil and rocks.

  • Manual post hole diggers are the lightest option, often weighing around 10 pounds. Even with the scoops fully loaded with rocks and soil, it’s rare to need to lift more than 20 pounds from the hole.
  • Electric post hole diggers rank in the middle when it comes to weight. They usually weigh in the area of 20 pounds, making them the most convenient blend of weight and power for the casual DIYer.
  • Gas-powered post hole diggers are by far the heaviest option. They can often weigh more than 40 pounds. The extra weight allows them to dig into the soil easily, but it can also make them more difficult to remove.

Handles

Whether using a manual option or a post hole digger with a powerhead, give some thought to the handles. They’ll be the user’s main points of contact with the tool for hours on end, so they need to be comfortable and offer the leverage needed to bore or scoop and remove the tool as easily as possible.

Long-handled manual diggers allow for exerting more leverage in the hole for scooping dirt and rocks, making it less likely to lose the soil back into the hole as the tool comes out. They also can dig deeper.

Generally speaking, wider handles are better for powered units. Wider handles enable greater control over the twisting nature of a post hole digger, and a partner can help should the digger get firmly stuck in a hole.

Our Top Picks

Below is a roundup of our top favorites among the best post hole diggers available today. Be sure to compare and contrast the weight, power, and design of these tools before deciding which model makes the most sense for your project needs and budget.

Best Overall

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: XtremepowerUS 1200W 1.6HP Electric Post Hole Digger
Photo: amazon.com

From XtremepowerUS, this electric post hole digger can handle many common excavating projects. The unit has a 1,200-watt, 10.9-amp motor that produces 1.6 horsepower and 90 pounds of torque. It weighs under 30 pounds and features a grip-mounted lockout switch and trigger, making it comfortable and easy to use. With an extension cord, simply plug the tool into a standard electrical outlet and from there, you’ll be able to run this quiet tool anywhere the cord will reach.

Pros

  • Lightweight yet powerful
  • No gas needed
  • Comfortable grip
  • Operates quietly

Cons

  • Cannot spin in the reverse direction


Best Manual

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger with Hardwood Handle
Photo: amazon.com

Digging holes manually isn’t a lot of fun, but sometimes it’s the most convenient or even the only option. For these scenarios, check out this post hole digger from AMES. This traditional manual post hole digger has a 6.25-inch spread at the point and weighs under 9 pounds, helping to dig holes for 4×4 fence posts without a large machine.

The AMES post hole digger has two hardwood handles with cushioned grips for avoiding blisters and fatigue. The handles are 48 inches long, providing an overall length of 58 inches. They also have measurement hashes for determining the depth of the hole without taking out a tape measure.

Pros

  • Handy measuring stick on the handle
  • Cushioned grip
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Wooden handles can break after heavy use
  • Blades become dull and need sharpening


Best Gas

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: ECO LLC 52cc 2.4HP Gas Powered Post Hole Digger
Photo: amazon.com

For a project that requires a heavy-duty post hole digger, consider ECO LLC’s gas-powered model. Its powerful two-stroke engine powers the auger into tough, compacted soil. This unit also has two wide handles with a grip-mounted throttle for easy control and a 1.2-liter gas tank for extended use.

This kit comes with both a 6- and 10-inch auger, providing the capability to handle smaller projects like metal posts and mailboxes as well as heavier-duty 4×6 posts and footings. It also comes with an extension to dig holes to depths up to 55 inches.

Bear in mind only that the ECO LLC weighs over 50 pounds. Meaning, this is a burly tool that requires considerable strength to maneuver and operate successfully.

Pros

  • Great for hard, compacted soil
  • Multiple auger sizes to choose from
  • High power saves time

Cons

  • Heavy and cumbersome to maneuver
  • Pricey


Best Electric

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: XtremepowerUS 1500W Industrial Electric Post Hole
Photo: amazon.com

This post hole digger’s high-wattage, 10.9-amp motor creates up to 90-foot pounds of torque—more than enough to wiggle stubborn rocks loose—despite the tool being relatively lightweight at under 30 pounds. For ease of operation, there are two thick, nonslip grips for keeping this powerful post hole digger under control. The tool also features a grip-mounted trigger and a safety lockout switch. Included is a 6-inch auger that measures 28 inches long.

Pros

  • Nonslip handles
  • Simple to maintain
  • Safety lock for added security

Cons

  • Less torque than a gas unit


Our Verdict

For a post hole digger that operates quietly and is easier to maintain than a gas unit, consider the XtremepowerUS Electric Post Hole Digger, which is lightweight yet still powerful for the job. If your soil is hard and compacted and requires extra power to dig through it, the ECO LLC Gas Powered Post Hole Digger is an ideal pick, with enough heft behind it to easily dig through tough soil.

How We Chose the Best Post Hole Diggers

The best post hole diggers are light enough for easy maneuverability yet still pack enough punch to handle tougher soils. Our research shows that shoppers look for a variety of units depending on the task at hand. We took care to suggest options that cover this range of uses, from lightweight electric units suitable for most jobs, all the way up to a high-power gas unit that’s capable of ripping through hard and compacted soils without issue. We even included a manual option for times when a loud motor or too much power is inappropriate,

Our list of recommendations only includes products that are known for their quality construction, ease of use, and comfort during operation. All units suggested here feature comfortable grips to help reduce strain on users during prolonged use. In addition, our top picks with gas and electric motors all provide enough torque to comfortably handle most soil types, and they shouldn’t pose many difficulties in rocky or troublesome areas so long as the user is taking the proper precautions.

The Advantages of Owning a Post Hole Digger

While it might not seem like a lot of work to dig a post hole or two with a shovel, the size of the hole needed can end up seeming enormous. Owning a post hole digger means the opportunity to make holes almost anywhere in the yard without a large-scale excavation project or mess.

For the average person, digging post holes is the least enjoyable part of a fence project. They can be backbreaking to dig, and the process can seem to go on forever. Using a post hole digger can substantially cut the amount of time spent digging holes.

Post hole diggers have other uses as well. Many ice fishers use post hole diggers fitted with 4- or 6-inch augers to drill into the ice’s surface. A post hole digger can also dig holes for planting flowers, shrubs, and bushes—just choose an appropriately sized auger for each.

  • Avoid large-scale excavations and the messes that go with them.
  • Post hole diggers cut down the amount of time it takes to complete projects.
  • Dig holes for ice fishing or planting flowers and shrubs.

FAQs About Post Hole Digger

If you don’t have a lot of experience with post hole diggers, you might still have some questions about them, what they can do, or how they work. This section is for you. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about post hole diggers.

Q. How deep can I dig with a post hole digger?

Post hole diggers can dig quite deep, as you can add extension pieces to continue digging. However, too many extensions can cause the machine to be difficult to lift or place in the hole. Generally speaking, auger lengths over 5 feet can become difficult to manage.

Q. What are the advantages of a manual option over a powered one?

The main advantage of a manual post hole digger over a powered one is the cost. Manual diggers tend to be far less expensive. They’re also highly portable and don’t require a battery, gasoline, or an extension cord.

Q. What is the difference between an auger and a post hole digger?

The difference between the two is in how they dig holes. You thrust a traditional post hole digger into the ground and remove the soil between the scoops. An auger “screws” into the ground and transports dirt along the blade up to the surface.

Best Roof Cleaner Options

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While most homeowners spend the majority of their time maintaining the ground-level features of their homes, the roof is often an afterthought. It’s not until dirty, dark streaks and patches of moss show up that they realize their neglect is affecting their roof.

If that describes you, fear not; you can save your roof. All you need to do is block off some time, arm yourself with the best roof cleaner, and get to work. In conjunction with a little spraying and scrubbing, these special formulas will have your roof looking fresh and renewed in no time. They cut through the dirt, grime, and sludge, revealing your roof’s true colors.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Wet and Forget Moss, Mold and Mildew Stain Remover
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Mold Armor E-Z House Wash 64 fl. oz.
  3. BEST BLEACH: MOLD ARMOR CLEANER 1 GAL
  4. BEST CHEMICAL: Spray & Forget Revolutionary Roof Cleaner Concentrate
  5. BEST ECO-FRIENDLY: Simple Green, SMP13006, Industrial Cleaner/Degreaser
  6. BEST PRESSURE: Oxy Solve Total Outdoor Pressure Washer Cleaner
  7. BEST FOR EXTERIOR MILDEW: Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover
Best Roof Cleaner

Photo: istockphoto.com

Types of Roof Cleaners

Don’t rush out and set up the ladder quite yet. You first need to educate yourself on the different types of roof cleaners available. They all work a little differently, and some are much harsher on the environment than others. It’s important to do a little research before you choose the best roof cleaner for your needs.

Bleach-Based

For particularly stubborn stains and discolorations, beach-based cleaners might be the way to go. They’re so strong, in fact, that you don’t even need to scrub or rinse the roof down for them to work. Simply apply them to the roof and let them dry. The bleach will eat through the dirt and grime all on its own.

Here’s the thing about bleach-based chemicals, though: They’re extremely harsh. They can bother you if you breathe in their vapors, and your overspray (or runoff when it rains) can wreak havoc on your plants. These cleaners are so strong that you should try to keep your windows closed for a few days to avoid the fumes and odors.

Chemical-Based

Bleach isn’t the only chemical manufacturers use to restore your roof to its former glory. Some formulas feature ammonia, copper sulfate, and trisodium phosphate, all of which can do a great job of removing the stains, molds, and mosses that grow on roofs.

These formulas can be harsh on your plants as well, though usually to a lesser degree than bleach-based cleaners. They rarely require the user to scrub or apply a second application, and in most cases, there’s no need to keep your windows closed after application. They usually come in concentrates, so you’ll probably want to mix them with water unless you have a really stubborn stain.

Eco-Friendly 

If you’re looking for a safer, less environmentally detrimental approach to cleaning your roof, check out an eco-friendly cleaner. These formulas break up the dirt, algae, and mold on your roof without the inherent dangers of chemical and bleach compounds.

Eco-friendly cleaners are safe for your kids, plants, and the wildlife that might roam through your property. While it’s entirely possible to have some type of allergic reaction to these products, they’re generally safe.

Eco-friendly cleaners tend to use oxygen to break down dirt and roof-loving molds and algae, so they work best with a bit of agitation. Since you’ll probably have to scrub most of your stains and discolorations away, having a long-handled brush on hand will be incredibly helpful.

Pressure Cleaner

If you want to blast your roof clean, you can always set up a pressure washer and get to work. The pump inside your pressure washer boosts the amount of pressure with which the water comes out of the nozzle, knocking dirt and film clear off your shingles.

But pressure washers can also blast your shingles off, so be careful when you’re spraying your roof.

To help increase your pressure washer’s effectiveness, there are lots of products available that you can mix into the water. If you don’t use a chemical, realize that water alone might not kill any residual moss and algae.

What to Consider When Buying the Best Roof Cleaner

Now that you have a bit more background on the different types of roof cleaners, there are more factors to consider. This section will outline the most important considerations to keep in mind while you’re shopping for the best roof cleaner for your home. It covers aspects like the different types of roofing materials, how much coverage you’ll get, and how easy the products are to use.

Roof Material

The first thing you need to consider is the materials that make up your roof. Keep in mind that you need to consider all the materials to ensure you’re using the right product.

Less durable materials like vinyl and rubber membranes found on flat roofs or RVs are particularly susceptible to damage from harsh chemicals. These heavy-duty cleaners can wear the roofing components down faster than if you used an eco-friendly option.

Tougher materials, like asphalt, metal, or slate roofs, can take much stronger chemicals. You’ll be able to use bleach or chemical-based cleaners without worrying about what they’ll do to your roof’s finish.

Chemical Composition

The best roof cleaners break down into two options: eco-friendly and chemical. Eco-friendly options don’t contain harmful chemicals, so they’re safe to use on roofs above gardens and plants. The composition of chemical-based products, on the other hand, isn’t always so environmentally conscious.

Chemical-based cleaners often use chemicals like ammonia, copper sulfate, and trisodium phosphate. They can be harsh, but they’re extremely effective at removing the stains as well as the molds, algae, and mosses that cause them. Simply diluting them to the manufacturer’s recommended mixture does reduce some of the risk, so read the directions carefully.

Coverage

Not all roof cleaners can cover the same amount of square footage, so it’s important to understand how much roof a bottle or jug can handle. To do this, you have to know the size of your roof first: Simply multiply each section of your roof’s width by its height. Tally each of those sections. The number you get after you add up all the different planes is your square footage.

Some of the best roof cleaners come in concentrated formulas that you can dilute for maximum coverage. While their bottles might be small, they can often cover thousands of square feet of roof if you dilute them correctly.

User-Friendliness

Cleaning your roof isn’t all that entertaining or fun, so it should be made as painless as possible. Finding a user-friendly product can make all the difference.

A chemical that you can spray on your roof and leave to do its work is by far the easiest way to clean your roof. Other chemicals might require you to scrub the surface, which can be a challenge for high roofs.

Also, consider the application. Spray bottles can be easy to use, but they can make covering a large area difficult, so they’re ideal for smaller roofs. Concentrate bottles that attach to the end of your hose make applying the chemical to larger roofs extremely easy, but you might not be able to reach high peaks from the ground. Whatever you choose, be sure to select a product that you can apply easily for your particular roof.

Effectiveness

Ultimately, how well the product works at removing stains, molds, algae, and discolorations is one of the most important factors to keep in mind. The more effective the product, the fewer coats you’ll have to apply, and the less often you’ll have to apply it.

Less effective products don’t always kill the root cause of the discoloration, even if the stain disappears. If that root is still present, there’s a good chance that whatever caused the stain will come back, and you’ll have to apply your product more often to keep up with it.

Harsh chemicals are by far the most effective and often take just one application. Eco-friendly products might take follow-up applications or more frequent cleanings.

Our Top Picks

All your research is about to pay off, as you’re now ready to shop for the best roof cleaner. The products listed below are some of the best roof cleaners that you can buy for removing ugly stains, algae, and dirt. You’ll find budget-friendly options, products with environmentally safe formulas, and heavy-duty formulas for tough stains. Compare them all to ensure you choose the best product for your needs.

Best Overall

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: XtremepowerUS 1200W 1.6HP Electric Post Hole Digger
Photo: amazon.com

The quicker you can clean your roof and move on to enjoying your free time, the better. Try this one-step process that will remove roof buildup, reactivating and washing contaminants from the surface each time it rains. Its bleach-free, non-caustic, non-acidic, chemical-based formula means you can use it on your roof, as well as almost any other outdoor surface.

After you spray your roof, you’ll only need to reapply if you see new growth or stains reappearing. This concentrate comes in 1-gallon bottles that you can dilute to make up to 6 gallons of cleaner. Depending on the strength you mix, and how porous your roof material is, you can cover anywhere between 750 and 2,250 square feet with one bottle.

Pros

  • Easy one-step process
  • Covers a wide area
  • Bleach-free formula
  • Suitable for roofs and other outdoor surfaces

Cons

  • Will kill any plants or grass it contacts


Best Manual

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: AMES 2701600 Post Hole Digger with Hardwood Handle
Photo: amazon.com

If you’re looking for a heavy-duty cleaner at a value-minded price, with a straightforward application process, it’s hard to beat this two-pack of 64-fluid ounce jugs. This product comes as two half-gallon bottles of cleaner, each with a hose attachment for extremely easy application.

The hose attachment will reach second-floor roofs without issue, and it starts killing mold and mildew within 10 minutes of application. There’s no follow-up scrubbing necessary either; simply apply, allow it to work for 10 minutes, and rinse it off to reveal a clean surface.

Pros

  • Hose attachment for easy application
  • Kills mold and mildew within 10 minutes
  • Heavy-duty solution

Cons

  • May require brush scrubbing for best results


Best Gas

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: ECO LLC 52cc 2.4HP Gas Powered Post Hole Digger
Photo: amazon.com

This bleach-based formula is worth checking out if you’re on the hunt for a heavy-duty cleaner that will provide near-instant results. This one-gallon concentrate can cover up to 2,000 square feet if diluted with a three-to-one water-to-chemical ratio. Simply apply it with a tank sprayer, a roller, or a sponge. It starts killing mildew and mold, and removing the stains involved, within 10 minutes.

Though the formula has a bleach base, you can use it on multiple outdoor surfaces, including roofing, siding, vinyl, and aluminum, but you should avoid using it on rubber. If you have a particularly tough stain, you can use the concentrate at full strength to help remove it quickly. In most cases, there’s no need to reapply or scrub.

Pros

  • Results are almost instant
  • Concentrated formula can be diluted as needed
  • Fast-acting

Cons

  • Not many differences from regular bleach


Best Electric

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: XtremepowerUS 1500W Industrial Electric Post Hole
Photo: amazon.com

This one-step cleaner is specifically formulated for your roof. This 1-gallon jug of concentrate mixes with water to create up to 10 gallons of cleaner, offering a maximum coverage of 2,000 square feet.

The cleaner continues to clean your roof after application, eliminating the need to scrub or reapply. The ammonia-based formula reactivates each time it rains, providing follow-up cleanings for up to 24 months at a time. It’s safe for use on asphalt, wood, slate, clay, and tile shingles, though you should avoid rubber or vinyl.

Pros

  • No scrubbing needed
  • Activates repeatedly in the rain for up to 2 years
  • Safe for most roof materials

Cons

  • Stubborn stains may linger


Best Upgrade

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: Landworks Earth Auger Power Head Steel 6 x 30 Bit
Photo: amazon.com

When it comes to an eco-friendly roof cleaner, consider going with the original in the environmentally-conscious business. This is a non-toxic alternative to chemical-heavy products. While it’s nontoxic and biodegradable, it’s powerful enough to cut through oil and grease, so the dirt and grime on your roof shouldn’t be an issue.

This 5-gallon bottle is a concentrate, so you’ll be able to mix it with water or use it at full-strength to cut through tougher stains. You can apply it with a roller, sponger, or sprayer, but its eco-friendly formula means you can use it in a pressure washer without worrying about overspray

Pros

  • Nontoxic and biodegradable
  • Pleasant odor
  • Great for removing grease and dirt

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Not as strong as chemical cleaners


Best Overall

The Best Post Hole Digger Options: Southland SEA438 One Man Earth Auger
Photo: amazon.com

Pressure washing with harsh chemicals can cause a lot of unintended damage, as it’s hard to control your overspray. This solution is peroxide-based, so overspray won’t destroy your plant life or other surfaces. It lifts dirt, grime, and stains as well as mold, mildew, and algae, so it works well for the substances hanging out on your roof.

If you stretch out this concentrate to its most diluted but usable ratio, the 1-gallon jug can make 21 gallons of cleaner. If you run the concentrate straight through your pressure washer, you’ll be able to cover up to 6,400 square feet.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Peroxide-based instead of harsh chemicals
  • Environmentally friendly solution
  • Effective on multiple outdoor surfaces

Cons

  • May struggle with tougher oil stains


Our Verdict

For a great all-around roof cleaning solution, pick up the Wet and Forget Moss, Mold and Mildew Stain Remover, which is easy to apply and requires no scrubbing. If harsh chemicals are a concern, consider the Simple Green Industrial Cleaner/Degreaser, which boasts a fresh and pleasant odor in a nontoxic and biodegradable solution.

How We Chose the Best Roof Cleaners

There are multiple factors to consider when shopping for the appropriate roof cleaner, from the surface of the roof itself to the specific dirt issues that homeowners are faced with. Our list of recommendations covers the wide array of mold, moss, mildew, and oil cleaners to provide the best suggestions for each scenario.

In our research we found that shoppers have different expectations of the effort involved in maintaining a roof—some need a simple one-time spray solution that requires no scrubbing or washing to remove light stains, while others with stubborn stains on their roof are looking for heavy-duty chemicals that can make short work of the problem. Our top picks meet the needs of almost every typical situation.

One of the most important factors is the chemicals used in each product, with heavy-duty solutions tending to use bleach and other harsh chemicals, which are not always what shoppers are looking for. We made sure to provide a wide range of options, from highly effective—but perhaps more harmful—to the most environmentally friendly solutions on the market.

FAQs About Roof Cleaners

If you still have some questions about choosing or using the best roof cleaner, you wouldn’t be alone. It’s a complicated subject, and it can be tough to understand at first blush. This section contains some of the most frequently asked questions, so check to see if there’s an answer to your question here.

Q. How often does the roof need to be cleaned?

Many of the best roof cleaners recommend cleaning your roof every 12 to 24 months to ensure your roof stays clean and free from growth. But anytime you notice discoloration, moss, mold, or mildew, it’s a good idea to give your roof a spray.

Q. Can awnings be cleaned with roof cleaners?

It depends on the cleaner. Many of the heaviest duty cleaners will damage vinyl or fabric awnings, while some biodegradable or lighter-duty cleaners will work quite well.

Q. Can a single roof cleaner be used with and without dilution?

Most roof cleaners are available in concentrated forms, and you can mix them to whatever strength you’d like. If you’re planning to use yours at full strength, it’s a good idea to test it on a smaller space first.

Q. How can plants be protected when using a roof cleaner?

There are a few steps you can take to minimize your roof cleaner’s impact on your plants.

  1. Cover your plants in tarps or plastic sheeting.
  2. Use only as much chemical as you need to.
  3. Ensure your gutters aren’t clogged so any chemical-laden rainwater can flow away from the eaves.
  4. Water your plants heavily before, during, and after using your cleaner. Diluting the concentration of chemicals is the best way to lessen the risk of damage.

Q. Is special equipment required to clean my roof?

Basic safety items like safety glasses, a respirator, gloves, and long sleeves are certainly important. You can also equip yourself with a long-handled brush or roller, or a garden sprayer, to make applying your roof cleaner a little more straightforward.

Why Trust Bob Vila

Bob Vila has been America’s Handyman since 1979. As the host of beloved and groundbreaking TV series, including This Old House and Bob Vila’s Home Again, he popularized and became synonymous with “do it yourself” home improvement.

Over the course of his decades-long career, Bob Vila has helped millions of people build, renovate, repair, and live better each day—a tradition that continues today in the expert yet accessible home advice at the heart of BobVila.com. Today, the Bob Vila editorial team distills need-to-know information into project tutorials, maintenance guides, tool 101s, and more. These home and garden experts then thoroughly research, vet, and recommend products that support homeowners, renters, DIYers, and professionals in their to-do lists.

Tom Scalisi is a freelance writer specializing in the home design, construction, tools, and automotive industries. He has been involved in the trades for over 15 years as both a contractor and a commercial building mechanic. Tom has written for several online blogs and magazines including Next Luxury, The Drive, Car Bibles, and PowerTüls. In addition to his professional life, Tom enjoys getting outside on his mountain bike, camping, beekeeping, and fishing. Tom is also an avid racing and baseball fan. He lives in NY’s Hudson Valley with his wife, their three children, and three dogs.