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How long should a roof last?
It's a question that homeowners often ask: "How long should a roof last?"
The answer depends on a number of factors, including the quality of the original roofer's job, the type of materials used, and the climate where you live. For example, in areas of high sun exposure (such as the Deep South), it's to be expected that roofs will naturally have a shorter lifespan.
While no roof will last forever, there are some generally accepted ranges of life expectancy for different types of roofs.
Composition Shingles: 15-25 years or possibly more
This is by far the most common type of roof in the U.S. While they are generally the most economical choice, they're not always the most durable. However, they are available in different grades of quality; higher-end dimensional shingles have manufacturer warranties as long as 40 years or more.
Clay or Concrete Tiles: 25-40 years
Roof tiles are often advertised to last 50 years or more. Truth is, the tiles themselves likely would last that long, but the under sheathing materials beneath them will not. No matter how good they are, those materials will likely need to be replaced within 30-40 years. If they weren't good quality, or if they were improperly installed, the roof could need to be replaced in 10 years or even less.
Wood Shakes or Shingles: Up to 20-30 years
The lifespan of a wood roof is highly dependent on how well it's maintained. Since moisture is devastating to wood,it's important to keep a wood roof as dry as possible. This means regular cleaning to keep the roof free of leaves, moss, and anything else that retains moisture. Good attic ventilation is important, too, to keep the underside dry.
Metal: 20-40 years, possibly more
Metal roofs are one of the most durable and low-maintenance roofs available today. If high-quality materials are used and the roof is installed properly, it's quite possible that a metal roof will out last the house beneath it!
As you can see, the life expectancy of a roof can vary quite a bit, depending on how well it's originally installed,what it's made of, what kind of weather it's exposed to, and how well it's maintained.
When it's time to start thinking about your new roof contact a reputable roofing company to evaluate your options. Make sure to discuss the different roof choices for your home, the advantages and disadvantages of each, and the costs for each one.
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