How Long Do Roofs Last? Two Common Roof Types and Their Lifespans

How Long Do Roofs Last? Two Common Roof Types and Their Lifespans | San Angelo’s Pro Roofing & Repairs

The Lifespans of Different Roofing Materials

March 17, 2022 11 Read

Roofs are one of the most integral parts of a home; because of this, they must be made from durable and high-quality roofing materials. However, even the most durable roofs will get damaged from time to time, causing them not to last their intended life span. Heavy rains and intense storms may cause damage to roofing materials, which may lead to leaks and allow water to enter the home. Suppose you live in an area with severe weather conditions. In that case, your roof may not last as long as it would in more moderate climates, and you may need to hire professional roofing contractors to schedule a roof replacement sooner than you would expect.

The Lifespans of Different Roofing Materials

There are a few different types of roofs, and each one has a different lifespan. Asphalt shingles are the most common type of roofing material; they are affordable, durable, and last 20 years. Other roofing materials have various life expectancies. However, a roof’s lifespan will depend on several factors, including the quality of the roofing material, the climate and weather conditions in your area, and how well the roof is maintained.

How Long Do Asphalt Roofs Last?

If you wonder how long a roof made of asphalt shingles lasts? Then the answer is moderately long. Asphalt roofs are one of the most popular types of roofing for homes. They are made from asphalt roof shingles and fiberglass, making them durable and long-lasting. Most asphalt shingle roofs have a life expectancy of 20 to 30 years. Still, if they are not properly cared for, such as having a regular roof inspection and doing roof repairs immediately after minor damages, they may last only 10 to 15 years.

To ensure that your asphalt shingle roof lasts its entire roof’s longevity, you need to have them inspected and cleaned regularly. It would help if you also had any damaged asphalt roof shingles replaced as soon as possible so that water does not enter your home through the holes.

How to Tell if You Need an Asphalt Shingles Roof Replacement

If you have an asphalt shingle roof over 20 years old, it may be time to start thinking about getting an asphalt roof replacement. If your asphalt roof is leaking or has missing shingles, then this is a sure sign that you need a new shingle roof. Another sign that you need an asphalt roof replacement is if your energy bills have been increasing, as this could be due to heat escaping through the damaged or missing asphalt roof shingles.

How Long Do Architectural Shingles Roofs Last?

Architectural shingles, also known as dimensional shingles, are a newer roofing material made from asphalt and fiberglass. Architectural shingles may look similar to asphalt shingles. However, they are thicker and more durable than regular asphalt shingles, which gives them a longer lifespan. Most architectural shingle roofs have a lifespan of 30 to 50 years, but if they are not properly maintained, their roof’s lifespan may only last 20 to 30 years.

How to Tell if Need Your Architectural Shingles Roof Replaced

If you are unsure whether or not your architectural shingles roof needs a roof replacement, there are a few telltale signs to look for. One sign is the curling or buckling of the shingles. If the architectural shingles on your roof are starting to curl or buckle, this means that they are no longer providing adequate protection from the elements; therefore, your existing roof should be replaced. Another sign that your architectural shingles roof needs a roof replacement is large areas of missing shingles causing severe roof leaks. If more than 10% of the shingles on your roof are missing, it is likely time for a new roof installed. Finally, if the granules on your asphalt shingles start to come off, this is a sign that they are breaking down and no longer effective, meaning it is time for a roof replacement.

How Long Does a Wood Shingle Roof Last?

A wood shingle roof is one of the longest-lasting types of roofs, with 30 to 50 years. Wood shingles are made from cedar shakes, spruce, pine trees, or other wood shakes and cut into thin strips. Wood shingles are a popular roofing material because they are eco-friendly, durable, and have a natural look that many homeowners find appealing. However, wood shingles require more maintenance than other roofs; they need to be regularly sealed and stained to protect them from rot, mold, and insects.

How to Tell if You Need Your Wood Shingle Roof Replaced

If you have a wood shingle roof, it is essential to have it inspected regularly for damage so that you can address any problems before they become too severe. One sign that your wood shingle roof needs to be replaced is if more than 25% of the shingles are missing. Another sign is if the shingles are warped, cracked, or rotted, causing roof leaks in your home. If you notice any of these problems, it is likely time for a new roof.

How Much Does a Cedar Shakes Roof Replacement Cost?

The cost of a roof replacement can vary depending on the size of your roof, the type of roofing material, and the contractor you choose. However, on average, replacing a wooden shingles roof will cost a homeowner between $5,000 and $10,000, computed at $4 per square foot for a typical 2,000 sq. ft. roof.

How Long Does a Roof Made of Metal Last?

Metal roofs are long-lasting and increasingly popular for residential and commercial properties. Metal roofs offer many benefits over traditional asphalt shingles and the newer architectural shingles, including a longer lifespan, greater energy efficiency, and better resistance to wind, fire, and impact damage. But how long is the life expectancy of metal roofing material?

The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the materials' quality, the installation method used for the metal roofing, the climate, and performing roof repairs regularly. In general, however, a properly maintained metal roof can last up to 50 years or more with proper care. Some metal roofing manufacturers even offer warranties that their metal roof lasts up to 40 or 50 years.

Proper Installation

A metal roofing system is only as good as its installation. Improperly installed metal roofs are more susceptible to wind and water damage, so it is essential to choose an experienced roofing contractor when installing metal roofs.

Ideal Climate and Weather Conditions

The climate is also an essential factor when choosing a metal roofing system. A metal roof may not be the best option in areas with severe weather conditions, such as hurricanes or blizzards. High winds and heavy rains can damage metal roofs, and they can also become very slippery in icy conditions.

Regular Roof Maintenance and Inspection

Maintenance is another important consideration when deciding whether or not to install a metal roof. All roofs require some maintenance, but metal roofs require less frequent maintenance than traditional asphalt shingles. Periodic inspections and cleaning by a professional roofing company are usually necessary to keep a metal roof in good condition and ensure your roof lasts up to its lifespan.

How to Tell if Your Metal Roofs Needs Replacement

Even a well-maintained metal roof will eventually need to be replaced. Signs that your metal roof needs replacement include significant rusting, dents or punctures, and missing or broken ribbed metal panels. If more than 25% of the metal roof is damaged, it is likely time for a new metal roof installation.

Repairing metal roofs that are more than 25% damaged is not advisable since it can be more costly and time-consuming than installing an entire roof. Likewise, a severely damaged metal roof may no longer withstand wind uplift, which may cause the whole roof to get blown off your roof deck once a strong wind comes. So, if your metal roof is more than 25% damaged, it is likely time for a new metal roof installation. When choosing to replace metal roofing, it is best to hire professional roofing contractors for the job to ensure that you will have a long-lasting roof over your home.

How Long Do Clay Tile Roofs or Slate Tile Roofs Last?

Clay and slate tile roofs are similar to each other in that they both have a long life expectancy. If you are wondering how long does a roof made of clay tiles lasts, the answer is a very long time. Clay tiles can last up to 100 years, while a slate roof can last 150 years. Both roofs are also fire-resistant and relatively easy to maintain.

One downside to a slate roof and a clay tile roof is that they are both quite heavy, making them difficult to install on your home, hence hiring a professional roofing contractor. Additionally, a new roof made of clay or slate can be pretty expensive than other roofing materials such as asphalt or architectural shingle roofs. On average, clay and slate tiles will cost $ 12 – $20 per square foot installed, while a new asphalt shingle roof will only cost $5-$7 per square foot installed. Likewise, clay tiles are only suitable for sloped roofs and are not advisable for different roof types. If you are looking for a durable and stylish roof that will last for many years and have a high budget to spend per square footage for roofing, then a slate or clay tile roof may be the right choice for you. Slate tile manufacturers even give these roofing materials a lifetime warranty, so you can be confident in the investment you are making.

When it comes to how long a roof made of slate tiles lasts, this material is often said to last a century or more. One of the reasons slate roofs have such a long lifespan is that they are solid and durable. They are also resistant to fire, which is always a bonus. Slate roofs are also easy to maintain since they do not require much upkeep. However, like clay tile roofs, slate roofs can be pretty expensive and difficult to install due to their weight.

Both clay tile roofs and slate tile roofs have a lot to offer homeowners regarding durability and cost-effectiveness per square meter of investment. A new roof made of clay or slate tiles will have a life expectancy for generations.

How to Tell if You Need to Replace Clay or Slate Roofs

If your roof is made of clay tiles or slate tiles, it is likely to last a very long time with proper maintenance. However, even the best roofs will eventually need to be replaced. There are a few telltale signs that your roof may need to be replaced, including:

  • The roof is leaking
  • The roof is damaged or broken
  • The roof is old and needs to be replaced for safety reasons
  • There is moss or algae growth on the roof

If you notice any of these signs, it may be time to replace your clay or slate roof. Contact a professional roofing contractor to estimate replacement and discuss your options.

Architectural Shingles versus Asphalt Shingles: Which is Better?

While there are several roofing materials to choose from, a typical homeowner will most likely choose between asphalt shingles and architectural shingles for several reasons. First, in terms of price per square foot, an asphalt roof and an architectural shingles roof will be the most affordable choice. Second, a professional roofing contractor can easily install an asphalt roof and a dimensional shingles roof. Third, both asphalt shingles and architectural shingles can provide a homeowner with a wide variety of design options.

So, which is the better choice? Asphalt Roof or architectural shingle roof? Here are some things to consider:

Asphalt Roof

Asphalt shingles have been the most popular roofing material for many years. The main reason for this is that they are very affordable. In terms of cost, installing an asphalt roof will cost an average of $5 per square foot. An asphalt roof will also last for about 20 years.

While an asphalt shingles roof is an excellent choice for many homeowners, some drawbacks are considered. One drawback is that an asphalt roof can be susceptible to damage from high winds. Another disadvantage is that an asphalt roof can be less energy efficient than other roofs.

Architectural or Dimensional Shingles Roof

Dimensional shingles are laminated shingle that has become increasingly popular in recent years. Architectural shingles are made of two layers of material with a layer of asphalt in between. The two layers of material can be made of different materials, such as fiberglass or organic felt.

The main advantage of an architectural shingle roof is that it is more durable than an asphalt roof. An architectural shingle roof can last for up to 30 years.

Another advantage of an architectural shingle roof is more energy-efficient than an asphalt roof. The two layers of material in an architectural shingle roof help insulate the home and keep it more relaxed in the summer and warmer in the winter.

A disadvantage of an architectural shingle roof is that it can be more expensive than an asphalt roof. The installation of an architectural shingle roof will cost an average of $7 per square foot.


Aside from considering the cost of installation, it is also essential to factor in the roof’s lifespan when choosing to install a new roof over your home. Asphalt shingles are an excellent choice for many homeowners because they are very affordable and can last for 20 to 30 years. However, architectural shingles are more durable and energy-efficient than asphalt shingles. If you can afford the higher installation cost, an architectural shingle roof is an excellent choice for your home. However, whichever roof you choose, it is best to have it installed by a professional roofing company to avoid having the roof’s warranty being voided and ensure that the roof will reach its intended life expectancy.