What’s the Average Lifespan of a Roof?

 

Homeowners that prioritize roof repairs and annual roof inspections can ensure a much longer “roof lifespan” than those who ignore such an important part of the home. However, asking Roof Lifespanwhat the average lifespan of a roof might be is akin to asking what the average lifespan of a human is—it depends. It depends on location, the materials used, maintenance and the good luck of avoiding natural disasters. Some roof materials are built to last longer than others, such as copper which many people think ages beautifully and can last for generations.

However, if really pressed, an “average” lifespan is about 20 years. In Utah, shingles are the most popular roofing option. This is a region with four distinct seasons, and those snowy winters and blazing hot summers (complete with UV damage) can cause severe wear and tear on a roof. When considering roofing materials for new construction, a new roof or a total home remodel, homeowners don’t have to go with what’s most popular in their state. Consider these common roofing materials, their lifespan and how they might be a good fit for your home:

1. Asphalt/fiberglass

Both of these materials are available in shingles. Asphalt is very inexpensive, easy to care for and quickly installed, which makes it a favorite. However, it is not the most resistant to wind. Boasting a varied lifespan, it lasts anywhere from 20-40 years. Bear in mind though, that manufacturer warranties may only cover 15 years. Choosing fiberglass is more expensive up front, but these shingles can last up to 50 years.

2. Wood/shakes

Whether in shingles or shakes, this option is often either cedar or pressure-treated wood. It is more expensive than asphalt and may require more routine maintenance, but it comes in a variety of finishes to suit any aesthetic taste. Current trends include weathered looks, which can increase a home’s value. Generally strong against rot and insect infestations, the average wood shakes or shingles last about 30 years.

3. Steel/copper

Selecting a metal roof can be a great choice whether you go with stainless steel, galvanized sheets or the classic copper. Price will depend on the profile of the sheet, any finishes and overall size. However, many steel and copper roofs have lasted well over 50 years, so homeowners usually don’t have to replace roofs in their lifetime. For those who like the natural greenish aging of copper, some roofs can last over 100 years.

Bear in mind that the quality of the installation is just as important as the quality of the roofing material. Schedule a biannual inspection plan, choose the Roof Doctor and rest assured you’ll have a good roof over your head for many years to come.