How long a roof can be expected to last is an important question, since the roof is a fundamental part of your home. If the roof is not replaced when necessary, it can lead to huge expenses to repair your home along with paying for a new roof to be supplied and fitted.
The lifespan of a roof can be impacted by a number of factors. These include the materials that the roof is made from, the weather conditions in the area where the roof is installed, and how well the roof was installed.
How Often Will a Roof Need to Be Replaced?
The good news is that, in general, roofs have a long lifespan. However, if you have recently acquired a new home, you might find that the roof has already been in place for many years and is coming to the end of its useful life. The life expectancy of a roof will vary depending on the materials that it is made from.
● Asphalt Shingles:
Asphalt shingles are the most commonly used roofing material type and they are popular on various types of homes throughout the US. They typically last for between 15-25 years. However, there are different asphalt shingle types to consider and some do last longer than others. Cheaper three-tab asphalt shingles typically last around 15-20 years, while the more expensive dimensional or architectural shingles last up to around 25 years or even longer in the right weather conditions. Premium asphalt shingles can last up to thirty years and tend to be the most tolerant in extreme weather conditions.
● Slate Tiles:
Slate roof tiles are a roofing material with a very long life expectancy. If your roof is made from this, you will be glad to hear that you can expect it to last for around fifty to even one hundred years. This is a very sturdy roofing material that tends to be able to withstand a lot of weather conditions, and a great choice if you need a new roof and want to pick a material that will last.
● Wood Shakes and Shingles:
Another popular roofing material, wooden roofs can last for around 30-40 years depending on the type of wood used. Cedar is a commonly used material in roofing since it is resistant to common issues like insects and rot. To make sure that a wooden roof achieves the longest possible lifespan, regular maintenance is absolutely essential, including carrying out regular repairs, cleaning and staining the roof.
● Clay and Concrete:
Clay roof tiles are a material with a long lifespan of between 50-100 years. Concrete, on the other hand, does cost less than clay but also has a rather long lifespan of between 40-75 years, making them both highly durable and long-lasting options to consider.
With thatched roofs, the life expectancy of the roof can vary depending on the type of thatching material that is used. These roofs can have a life expectancy of anywhere from fifteen to over forty years. However, bear in mind that there is some additional maintenance required for this type of roof, as the ridge will need to be replaced around once per decade.
Like many other roofing material types, the life expectancy of a metal roof will differ based on the type of metal used. Zinc, copper, and other premium metals can last for over fifty years, or even for more than one hundred years. While these are some of the most expensive roofing materials available, the durability is often worth the investment. Cheaper metal roofs, such as those made with ribbed panels, typically have a lifespan of around 25-40 years. You can usually expect a standing seam metal roof to last for around fifty years at most. Homes in areas that are at a higher risk of hurricanes may benefit from stone-coated metal tiles, which are highly durable, resistant to weather extremes and last between 30-50 years.
How to Tell If a Roof Has Reached the End of its Lifespan:
Most of the time, a roof will need replacing after a catastrophic event like a tornado, hurricane or house fire. But even without these events, most roofs will naturally require replacing after some time. Asphalt shingles may become buckled, cracked or curled, while wooden roofs may rot, split, or have mold growth present. Cracks and chips in clay tiles are often a major sign that the roof may need replacing soon, while missing shingles and cracks tend to signify the end of life for a slate roof. On a thatched roof, raised nettings and ridges and dips on the roof might appear along with lichen and moss growth. Despite being one of the longest-lasting roofing materials, even metal roofs can have issues after a long time. You may notice leaks in the attic, rust or discoloration of the roof.
Whether you want to estimate how long your roof has left or are considering which material to choose for your new roof, understanding how long different roofing materials last is important for any homeowner.