The importance of your roof is obvious. As such, many homeowners want to get the best deal available. To have a long-lasting roof is possible, but only if you do it right. In fact, there are decisions that you can make today that will guarantee a longer life for your roof. That means your roof will have the right quality and will look better for a longer time. How long should a typical roof last and what can you do to ensure you get value for your money? This post will answer all your questions.

When it comes to the roof’s lifespan, there are several factors that determine how long it lasts. The following post gives a comprehensive list of all those factors:


The life expectancy of a roof varies between different roof materials. Here’s the averages:

Asphalt Shingles, 3-tab – 15 to 18 years

Asphalt Shingles, Architectural – 24 to 30 years

Galvalume (metal) – 30 to 45 years

Concrete Tile – 35 to 50 years

Built-Up or Modified Bitumen – 10 to 16 years

EPDM (rubber) – 10 to 16 years

But average lifespan estimates are based on “average” conditions. Many factors contribute to a longer or shorter life of the roof; so a particular roof’s life can vary—sometimes significantly—from the average. Here’s a list of conditions that affect roof longevity:

  • Color of roof – A dark roof absorbs more heat, which shortens the lifespan.
  • Angle of roof slope – Higher pitch roofs tend to last longer.

•Orientation of roof surface – A roof slope facing south will get more sunlight, and have a shorter life. Read more at McGarry and Madsen…

It is not just the materials that determine how long your roof will last. For instance, it may be built in a way that exposes it to more sunlight, thus shortening its lifespan. Or it could have the wrong color, yet has quality material.

roof lifespan

You may also want to be keen about the kind of coating your roof gets. It has the potential of increasing or decreasing the roof lifespan, as explained in the post below:

Typical Life Expectancy of a Roof Coating System

There are several different roof coating systems available in the roofing market today. It is important to do your research to make sure you choose a roof coating system that is created with high quality ingredients that will perform for many years to come.

How do you do this, you ask? By researching ASTM D6083, the standard for a liquid applied acrylic coating used in roofing that provides the marketplace with objective performance criteria. You can also research third party testing organizations, such as Energy Star or the Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC). These organizations independently tests roof coatings to ensure the product meets the standards they have set forth initially and over time to perform as intended and described. There are also building code requirements that must be met, depending on where you live, such as Title 24 in California or Miami-Dade in Florida. Read more at National Coatings…

Going the extra mile to find out the standards provided by the relevant organizations in your area will help you to choose the best one for your home so you’re not disappointed later on.

roof lifespan

So how would you practically make efforts to extend your roof’s life, even when you have the right material, coating and other conditions? A good place to start is to invest in proper maintenance, as described in the next post:

Tips to Expand the Life Span of the Roof

Now is the time for building owners to be scheduling fall roof inspections.  This needs to happen in year one of a new roof and continue yearly to provide lasting ROI from any roofing investment.  A good customer will ask probing questions about current trends and technologies in the roofing industry.  Metal Era, a leading manufacturer is pleased to share information on three key areas in regards to roof maintenance and performance.

Inspections – Building owners, who regularly have their roofs inspected including roofing membrane, flashings and metal details, pay a significant amount less on average in roof repair and maintenance annually. Inspections offer the ability to detect problems before they occur.  According to an article on, proactively maintained roofs last an average of 21 years while a reactive maintenance plan results in about a 13-year life span for the roof. Read more at Roofers Coffee Shop…

If you’re going to have a great roof for a longer time, you need to be deliberate about scheduling maintenance checks to ensure that everything is okay at any given point. And you will need to work with a professional roofer.

roof lifespan

If you’re in Northern Virginia and need to work with an expert residential roofer, we are your company of choice. We are on Expertise’s list of Best Roofers and offer same-day emergency roofing repair to customers in Virginia. We specialize in roofing, siding, inspection, and infrared roof leak detection and roof repair in Fairfax City, VA. Call us today!

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