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How Often Should a Residential Roof Be Replaced?

Jul 14

When it comes to replacing your roof, you have to consider the age, and condition of the roof as well as its material.

In this article, you will learn what factors to look for when deciding when to replace your roof. Learn about the life of your shingles and understand the signs that your roof is in need of replacement.

Also, find out the importance of avoiding damage to the roof by knowing the signs.

Signs roof needs to be replaced

The age of your roof is a factor in determining how often you should replace it. A properly installed asphalt shingle roof can last up to 25 years. But, it's important to note that you need to replace your roof if it's cracked or has severe wear.

Roofing inspections should be performed at least two times per year, preferably in the spring and fall. Look for curling shingles, missing shingles, crack shingles, bald spots, growing moss, and dark stains. If any of these signs are present, it may be time to schedule a roof replacement.

A typical roof in the U.S. should last around twenty to 25 years, depending on climate, material, installation methods, and maintenance. In addition, make sure to contact a professional roof replacement service to get an accurate estimate.

Roof age

To determine how often to replace your roof, start by checking your home improvement records.

When was your last roof replaced? If it's been more than 20 years since you installed the original asphalt shingles, you should consider a complete replacement.

For more information, check out the material of your roof and the age of your house to determine the appropriate replacement schedule. You can find out about the age of your residential roof by reading the label on your home improvement records.

How long materials last

What you choose as a roofing material will go a long way in determining its life span. Regardless of the material used, however, the lifespan of a roofing system is highly dependent on proper maintenance.

Common materials include asphalt shingles, cedar and wood, clay tiles, slate, and metal. Let's take a look at each one more in depth.

Asphalt Shingles

When should you replace asphalt shingles on a residential roof? The average lifespan of asphalt shingles is about 25 years. New shingles are generally around 70-150 dollars a square, and many companies offer warranties for up to 25 years. In addition to providing durability, asphalt shingles also offer protection against wind and UV rays. 

Asphalt shingles are usually composed of crushed minerals that are embedded in a layer that protects the top layer of asphalt from UV rays. When these granules are missing, shingles are more prone to wear out and curl. As the asphalt dries, the curls get worse. They will begin to lose their colors and shape and may even fall off when exposed to high winds. If this happens, it's time for replacement.

If you are selling your home, it's essential to evaluate the condition of the asphalt-shingle roof. Prospective buyers will want to know how long the roof will last before requiring a complete replacement.

Cedar & Wood Shingles

One of the most common roofing materials is wood, but there are many factors that determine the lifespan of wood shingles. Proper care and weather conditions play a huge part in the longevity of cedar roofs. It's important to replace damaged shingles as soon as possible to extend the roof lifespan.

Most wood roofs will stay in good shape for 20-30 years before replacement is needed.

Wood roofs will encounter small cracks from time to time. These are normal aging processes, but they shouldn't be overlooked. Split shingles, on the other hand, have already split and are in need of replacement. Fortunately, if you're unsure about the aging of your shingles, you can always request an inspection for free.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is a low-maintenance, energy-efficient roof option. While they can be more expensive than shingles, they will last for decades. These roofing materials are remarkably durable, and many types can last for up to 50 years with proper maintenance.

Copper is one of the most durable and expensive types of metal roofing. Stainless steel and galvanized steel are other good choices for residential roofs. Aluminum is also lightweight, and weather-resistant, but tends to dent.

Metal roofing requires specialized knowledge and a skilled team to install. Faulty installations may cause issues with the performance of the roof. Additionally, you should make sure that your metal roofing contractor is licensed and insured.

Slate Roofing

The most expensive roofing option is slate, but it can last for over a century if installed properly.

Hard slate will remain in good condition for 75 to 200 years. Soft slate is no slouch either when it comes to longevity. It is typically good for 50 to 125 years. 

Not sure what kind of slate you have on your roof? Colored slates are usually hard while black slates are generally soft. A professional roofer can tell you for sure.

Of course, due to their extended lifespan, slate roofs are more expensive to install, yet are a good long-term investment

Clay Tiles

Clay is a sustainable roofing material that has a high thermal mass, making it resistant to high winds and fire. It's also an attractive crown for many architectural styles. Best of all, clay roof tiles are relatively inexpensive to install and require little maintenance.

Even better, the longevity of clay tiles should not be underestimated. If properly installed, clay tiles can last for decades. Most are good for 100 years.

Clay tiles on a residential roof are available in a variety of designs. You can get them in glazed or unglazed finishes, and a range of colors and patterns. The most common shapes are flat, fluted, and interlocking. You can also find tiles that mimic wood shakes and traditional European structures.

In closing

There are a lot of factors that determine when a roof needs replaced. Think about the roof's age, what damage it has endured, and how it looks in general. A leaking roof may be repaired, but bigger problems may persist.

If you're not sure how to proceed, you can always call a local roofer for an inspection and consultation. Roofs are expensive and important to your home. They should be treated as such.