Skyline Timeline: How Long Does a Roof Last?

The right roof makes a statement, adding character and style to your home. While also protecting you from the elements.

A new roof boosts curb appeal along with increasing your home’s value by $10,500 on average. It can even save you more money with your home insurance company.

Yet, it’s a major investment that deserves thorough research. As not all roof types provide the same durability and longevity.

Read on to learn how long does a roof last and which styles are best for your home.

How Long Does a Roof Last?

Most homeowners need to repair or replace their roof at least once in a lifetime. If you’re wondering how long do roofs last, it will depend on factors like the home’s design and roof style.

Roof pitch can impact your roof’s longevity. Homes with a higher sloped roof will likely have a longer life. This is due to the slope making it easier for snow and rain to run off.

The roof’s material type also plays a big role in how long your roof will stand up to the test of time. Certain materials may cost more but are more durable than others. They get built to be able to withstand weather conditions better.

Asphalt Shingles

This is one of the most popular roofing choices, as it is more affordable and available. Asphalt shingles also offer a variety of colors to complement any home style or design. They can even get made to resemble slate or wood shake roofs.

Asphalt composition shingles get covered in granules made from crushed fiberglass. This style of roof is simple to install and does not need much maintenance. Although you may need to get it resealed over time.

Yet, despite the cost, it’s important to question: how long does a shingle roof last when compared to other styles?

Architectural shingles are less resistant to wind, rain, and hail than other materials. So, expect your roof to last about 20 to 30 years.

Plastic or Synthetic

This roof style is great for the environment as it gets made from recycled materials. Plastic roofing is sustainable and lightweight, so it’s easy to install. It can even mimic the look of wood, slate, or tile.

It’s also much more durable than one might think. With plastic roofs being resistant to high wind, fire, and hail. It’s also great for warm climates, as the roof stays protected from the sun’s UV rays.

Plastic roofing is even resistant to insect and mold growth. It has a roof life expectancy of about 50 years


Steel and copper roofs create a stylish aesthetic for your home. It’s durable enough to stand up to winds and extreme temperatures. It also loses snow easily, making it a top choice for colder climates.

It’s also lightweight, weighing even less than asphalt roofs. Metal roofs use special insulation techniques to control noise levels during storms.

This type of roof is fire resistant and energy efficient. It’s a sustainable choice that gets made from recycled materials.

Choosing a cool roof color can also lower your energy costs. As a lighter color will help reflect the sun’s rays, keeping your home cooler in the summer.

Metal roofs are more expensive. Yet they have a longer roof lifetime of about 50 years.

Slate or Tile

Slate and tile fall at the highest end of the roofing price spectrum. They are also some of the heaviest roof styles. So expect high shipping costs.

Clay or concrete tiles are ideal for their durability to high winds and temperatures. Tile roofs last about 30 to 50 years on average. Yet, clay tiles can go much longer with proper care.

Slate roofs last the longest, about 75 to 100 years. Yet, they are fragile and can become broken if stepped on. Slate tiles also need to get replaced one piece at a time, by a specialized roof contractor.

Due to their weight, these types of roofing styles do not fit well for every type of home. You’ll need to take your home’s frame and construction into consideration before installing slate or tile.

How Can You Prolong the Life of Your Roof?

The question of how long should a roof last will also depend on your own maintenance and care. As well as the professionalism and skill of the roofing contractor that you choose.

The Elements

The location you live in will impact the life of your roof. Those who live in harsh climates should consider a roof that can stand up to the elements. The more durable the roof material, the longer it can protect your home.

Weather conditions like hail, high winds, and heavy rain can damage your roof. As well as hurricanes, snow storms, and extreme temperatures. It’s important to get routine roof inspections when living in areas that experience this.

A darker colored roof can also absorb more heat. This can decrease the roof’s lifespan over time.

Having many trees on your property can also shorten your roof’s life expectancy. Too much shade can cause algae or mold growth on your roof. Fallen leaves and pine needles are other culprits.

Roof Maintenance Tips

A new roof can yield you a 68% return on investment on average. Yet, keeping it in pristine condition can extend its life and increase value.

Long-term care and maintenance can keep your roof strong and supportive for years to come. This includes removing snow, leaves, and mold growth from your roof. You may also want to consider a roof coating treatment to further protect your home.

It also helps to schedule routine inspections by a professional. They can check for signs of damage or leaks. Roof repair is a lot less expensive and hassle-free than a full roof replacement.

The Right Roofing Contractor

Always select a roofing contractor that follows quality installation techniques. Some roof styles are not meant to get layered on top of an old existing roof.

This will ensure a long life for your roof and a smoother process. A roofing contractor should get certified, insured, and offer a valuable warranty.

Choosing a local and reputable company is also important. Local contractors are well-educated on state laws and permitting.

Be sure to check online reviews and ask for customer testimonials. This way you can be sure you’re hiring a quality contractor that is quick and efficient. They should also specialize in the style of roof you plan to install.

Ready to Replace Your Roof?

So now you know how long does a roof last for each roofing style. Yet, a roof’s age isn’t the only factor to take into account for investing in a new roof.

Here are a few more signs that it may be time to replace your roof.

  • Leaking that doesn’t get fixed with a roof repair
  • Loose shingles
  • Cracking, chipping, or curling of shingles
  • Rust or extreme discoloration

Any of these signs of damage means it’s time to reach out to a professional for an inspection. Click here to request a free inspection and get a project quote for your home.


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