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How Long Do Roofs Last

Your roof is one of the most critical parts of your house. When functioning correctly, it protects the rest of the home from water damage and exposure to the elements. However, it’s helpful to know how long you can expect your roof to last so that you can plan and know when to replace your roof.

Factors that Affect Your Roof’s Lifespan

Several factors impact how long your roof lasts, including:

  • Type and quality of roofing materials: Each has different durability, making them last longer or shorter in different conditions. The quality of your roof material will also affect how long a roof should last. While lower-quality materials are often cheaper up front, they typically lead to more repairs and lower roof life expectancy, so it’s best to choose a superior product.
  • Quality of the installation workmanship: A poor quality installation will shorten your roof’s lifespan. For example, if shingles are misaligned or barely attached to the roof, any amount of wind can blow them off, leaving the underlying areas exposed and susceptible to leaking. Working with a licensed roofing company like Premier South Roofing will ensure a flawless roof installation that will protect your home for the long haul.
  • Environmental conditions: If you live in an area that regularly experiences strong winds or heavy storms, there’s a chance that your roofing materials will likely age at a faster rate. Consistent storm damage and weather will significantly reduce the lifespan of your roof.
  • The roof’s pitch: The roof’s slope defines its ability to shed water. Every resilient roofing system has a limit regarding how much ponding it can tolerate before it loses its strength. A roof with an excellent sloping system will ensure that water does not have the chance to pool on top of roofing materials.
  • Ongoing maintenance: Regular roof maintenance will ensure that your roof stays in great shape over the years. This means cleaning your gutters, trimming trees, removing moss build-up, looking for damaged shingles, examining metal framing for rust, removing debris, and performing a general roof inspection at least once a year. Failure to maintain your roof could result in premature roof replacement.


How Long Should a Roof Last Based on Type

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Here are several types of roofs and how long you can expect them to last before requiring a replacement:

  • Asphalt and architectural shingles: These are the most common roofing material. It’s a great option if you’re looking to manage costs and provide sufficient protection for your home. The downside of asphalt shingles is that it doesn’t last as long as other roofing options—you can expect your asphalt roof to last 15 to 30 years before needing any major repairs or replacement. In comparison, architectural shingles can last for 25 to 30 years easily.
  • Slate tile roof: Slate roofs have one of the longest life expectancies of any roofing material, ranging from 75 to 200 years, with slate tile manufacturers offering warranties anywhere from 50 years to a lifetime.
  • Wood shingle and shake roof: Typically cut from cedar, spruce, or pine, wood shingle or shake roofing is very popular because it offers a natural, rustic aesthetic and stands the test of time and ages well. They can last up to 30 years, but you must perform regular maintenance to get the most of your wood shingle or shake roof. Wooden roof upkeep includes yearly cleanings and repainting or staining every five years.
  • Clay or concrete tile roof: This roofing type is highly durable, lasting anywhere between 50 to 100 years. The life expectancy of clay or concrete tile roofs is long because tiles are weather, rot, and fire-resistant.
  • Metal roof: Metal roofing is growing in popularity – it typically has a longer roof life expectancy than asphalt options, but it’s also more expensive to install. The life expectancy of a metal roof depends on the thickness – with thinner metal, your roof will last about 20 to 25 years, but choosing thick, quality material will provide over 50 years of protection.
  • Composite shingle roofs: They are made of polymer, rubber, or plastic and can be designed to look like wood or slate tiles. The composite shingle roof is long-lasting, with an average lifespan of 40-50 years.
  • Flat roof systems: An EPDM roof typically last 25 to 30 years, while PVC roofing lasts over 20 years, depending on how well it’s maintained. TPO roofing usually lasts between 15 to 20 years, but if you have a spray foam roof, you can expect it to last well over 50 years.


When to Replace A Roof

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It’s essential to keep a close eye on your roof and inspect it regularly for any signs of failure. Typical warning signs you need a new roof include:

  • Old age: In the end, age will catch up with even the most durable, well-maintained roofs. If your roof has outlived or is nearing the end of its lifespan, you might want to consider a replacement. You can check home improvement records if you’re not sure exactly when your roof was installed.
  • Leaks and water damage: Roof leaks are one of the most obvious signs your roof is on its way out. Check for moisture marks, brown, yellow, or grey stains, and peeling paint on walls and ceilings. Also, take a peek in your attic, where damp rafters or leaks could point to roof damage.
  • Moss, mold, or fungi have taken over: If you discover mold or mildew growing on your walls or ceiling, this may signify a leaky roof or condensation. If noticeable moss remains after brushing, you may need a roof replacement.
  • Sagging roof: Sagging is a sign that trapped moisture has rotted away boards under the roof. A droopy, sagging roof is one that surely needs replacing before further damage occurs to your home. Check the surface for signs of trapped moisture, rotting boards, or sagging spots—especially at the lowest points in the roof.
  • Multiple missing shingles or granules: It’s common for a shingle or two to come off in a rough windstorm, especially if a few of them weren’t nailed down. However, if you notice that many shingles are coming off, it could indicate that they are simply wearing out and that you have to have them replaced.


Need Roof Replacement? Premier South Roofing Can Help!

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If your roof has held up over the years and is approaching the end of its roof life expectancy, or you’ve noticed warning signs of a failing roof, you might want to consider a roof replacement. The roof replacement experts at Premier South Roofing will assess your roof to determine if a roof replacement is the best solution. If it is, we’ll guide you through the entire process, helping you choose the best roofing material and ensuring a flawless installation. Contact us today to request a free estimate!

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