Do you have any roof damage or wood rot on your old roof? Does your current roof have mold growth or clogged gutters? All these obvious signs point toward needing a roof replacement. How often should you replace your roof if you’re unsure about damaged shingles?
In the complete guide below, you will learn the answer. Here, we will discuss the life expectancy of a typical roof and the average lifespan of specific roofing materials. You will learn about the most obvious signs to look for before replacing your roof.
How Often Should You Replace Your Roof?
You will need to replace your roof anywhere from every 12 to 50 or more years. Architectural asphalt shingle roofs tend to last anywhere from 12 to 20 years. Slate roofing systems, however, can last for 30 years while metal roofing materials can last anywhere from 40 to 70 years.
How Long Will Your Roof Last?
Generally, you can expect a roof to last around 30 years. However, that does depend on maintenance. Some roofing systems have low maintenance requirements while others, like wood shingles, need at least yearly repairs.
So, how often should you replace your roof? You’ll likely need a roof replacement every 20 to 30 years unless you use metallic materials. If replacing the roof isn’t within the budget, you can improve your roof’s lifespan with a few repairs to fix water damage, peeling paint, or broken tiles.
The Factors that Affect Roof Lifespan
Numerous factors will impact the life span of your roof. A few of these factors include:
- Regular inspections or lack thereof
- Harsh weather
- Ice dams and winter storms
- Bad patch jobs
- Long-term unfixed damage
- Strong winds and rain storms
- Mold and moss growth
- Excess moisture on the roof
- UV rays and sun damage
High winds, flooding, and bad weather wreak havoc and impact the condition of a roof more than most other factors. However, a roofing contractor can provide you with a free roof inspection to see if you need a new roof.
Watch for Signs of Interior Damage
It’s vital to keep your eyes out for interior roof damage, especially extensive damage. That way, you can prevent further damage and complete major repairs. For instance, if your ceiling starts leaking and the tiles leak underneath, you have interior roof damage.
Also, some tiles can trap moisture and you may even see a sagging ceiling. Is your ceiling or attic discolored and do you see yellow spots? Then, you likely have interior damage to your roof. Watch out for these water stains. We recommend replacing or repairing the roof before the stains rapidly worsen.
Watch for Signs of Exterior Damage
Do you see any missing shingles? Or do you have cracked asphalt shingles on your roof? Does your wood shingle roof have any curling or broken shingles? When your architectural asphalt shingles or wood shingles have these issues, it’s clear that your roof has exterior damage.
Whether you have exterior damage on a wood roofing system or cracked asphalt shingles on your roof, you will likely need your roof replaced.
Consider the Roofing Material
The lifespan of roofing systems greatly depends on the roofing material. Homeowners looking to replace their roofs should understand that the material is an important consideration.
For added durability and a longer timeline for your roof, you will need to pick the right medium before you replace the roof. For example, asphalt shingles don’t last nearly as long as metal and slate roofs.
Asphalt shingle roofs can last anywhere from 10 to 25 years. However, they do have other benefits, such as:
- Easy, user-friendly installation
- Low maintenance needs
- Attractive appearance
Homeowners also need to pick the right gutters to align with their shingle roofing system. Regardless of lifespan, this type of roof will improve the curb appeal of your home. Further, it can even increase property value.
Wood Shingles and Wood Shakes
A wood shake roof or a wooden flat roof tends to last anywhere from 20 to 30 years. You can pick wood shakes in a variety of colors, sizes, and types of wood. Cedarwood shakes are often the best option since they last the longest and resist rotting and insects.
Metal Roof Materials
A roof depends on its material to last longer. Luckily, metal roofing systems tend to last anywhere from 40 to 70 years. It’s one of the longest-lasting materials available. Standing-seam metal roofs are low-cost at $100 to $200 per square panel. However, standing-seam copper panels are more expensive at around $900 per square panel.
Slate Roof Materials
If you want a good roof that lasts the longest amount of time, then pick a slate roof material. Most homeowners with roofs that need to be replaced would benefit from using slate since it can last anywhere from 75 to 100 or more years.
Slate is made out of metamorphic rock, which is why these tiles are even more durable than concrete tiles. However, you will need to have a strong enough house and attic to withstand the extensive weight of slate tiles.
If you need a roof replacement, clay tiles are also a good option. These are popular in the southwestern United States like Arizona and Nevada due to the desert climates. Clay tiles can last anywhere from 50 to 100 years.
How Do I Know I Need a Roof Replacement?
The most obvious signs that you need a roof replacement include water damage and a leaky ceiling, missing shingles, and broken or curling tiles. Other signs are mold and moss growth, a sagging roofline, and rainstorm damage.
Before You Go
So, how often should you replace your roof? The information here explains how the lifespan of different roofing materials differs. Therefore, the answer greatly depends on the quality of materials and whether the roof underwent any storm damage. If you want to have a very long-lasting roof, consider choosing slate or metal roofing material.