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How Long Does A Roof Last?

How Long Does A Roof Last?

Two of the most common signs that it's time for a new roof include:

  • The shingles on your roof are starting to curl up
  • You find grit beneath the downspouts

These signs of a worn-out roof tend to start showing up after about 15 years, but that can vary depending on the material your roof is made of. Before you replace it with a new version of the same material, consider other options that may be better suited to your home:

  • Wood Shingles: Many homeowners love the weathered look that wood shingles provide, plus wood can offer insulation benefits to the attic space below. However, wood roofs have a shorter life span than some other options like metal, and they require occasional maintenance to avoid mold, rot and insect damage. These roofs typically last around 30 years.
  • Clay or Slate Tiles: A terra-cotta or gray slate roof can update the look of your home's exterior. These materials also age well and can last for up to 50 years. But the upfront cost of a tile roof makes it one of the more expensive options, and its weight -- usually between 6 and 18 pounds per square foot -- often requires extra support.
  • Metal Sips: From galvanized steel to aluminum or copper, metal roofs usually outlast a traditional shingle roof by at least a couple of decades, up to around 50 years before they need replacement. Cost can be a limiting factor, and some may not appreciate the noisy nature of the rain on a metal roof.
  • Synthetic Replicas: Want the look of a gray slate roof but flinch at the cost? Many synthetic products can mimic that high-end look you prefer without breaking your budget, though the life span will vary depending on the material you use.
  • Asphalt or Composite Shingles: If you've gone through the other options and none seem right for your home, consider these trusted standbys. There's a reason why asphalt shingles and composite shingles (their more modern counterpart) are the most common roofing materials in America. Both types can last about 20 years and are more affordable than most alternatives.

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