How Long Do Shingle Roofs Last?

As a homeowner, it’s always helpful to have some idea of when you’ll need to invest in household upgrades and replacements. While many people know how long their appliances will likely last, there seems to be a bit more confusion when it comes to roofing. In truth, there can be quite a bit of variance when it comes to how long a roof will last, and many factors tend to come into play. However, if your home has a shingle roof, there are certain guidelines you can follow to at least get a general estimate of when you’ll need to replace it.
A piece of grey color roofing shingle

Asphalt Shingles

There are several types of shingles used in roofing, and asphalt shingles are currently the most common. These shingles are made using a base of either fiberglass or organic material, which is covered in an asphalt coating. A very high percentage of new homes are built with roofs using asphalt shingles because of their relative affordability. Asphalt shingles are also very durable, providing a solid layer of protection for the roof against the elements.

On average, a roof made from asphalt shingles can last anywhere from 15 to 30 years before it needs to be replaced. If you live in an area that regularly experiences high humidity, your roof’s asphalt shingles may not hold up as long as they otherwise would. This is because the moisture in the air can often promote the growth of fungus and algae, which can cause significant damage to the shingles over time.

Architectural Shingles

Architectural shingles are another popular type of roofing material. These are a premium type of asphalt shingle, which are as much as three times thicker than the standard squares. As a result, roofs made with architectural shingles are denser and tend to be more resilient than those made from typical asphalt shingles.

Although architectural shingles are more expensive than standard asphalt shingles, they also hold up longer on average. If you have a roof using these special shingles, it will most likely remain in good condition for around 25 to 30 years. If you’re lucky, you may even get several years longer than that out of the roof before you need to invest in a replacement.

Wooden Shingles

Not all shingles are made of asphalt. Many homes feature roofs built with wooden shingles, which are known for looking great on just about any style of house. Usually, wooden shingles are made from cedar due to the fact that it’s resistant to rot and insects. On average, wooden shingles are more expensive than standard asphalt shingles, but their prices can vary quite a bit.

If your home has a roof with wooden shingles, it may very well last you for up to 30 years. However, there’s certainly no guarantee that it will hold up for that long. With wooden shingles, it’s especially important that you keep a close eye on the condition of your roof. Because wooden shingles are a natural product, they tend to be more prone to warping and splitting. Plus, there can be inconsistency when it comes to the quality of the shingles, which can have a major effect on how long the roof lasts.

Factors That Determine How Long a Roof Lasts

As you’ve probably noticed, there can be quite a wide range when looking at how many years a shingle roof typically lasts. That’s because there are multiple factors that play a role in determining how long any individual roof can stay in good condition. The most important of these variables is how well you care for your roof.

If you want your shingle roof to last for as long as possible, it’s imperative that you keep up with proper roof maintenance. For one, you should have your roofing inspected by professionals every year or two. During these inspections, your hired experts will be able to examine the shingles for any damage or deterioration. They’ll evaluate the status of the roof and determine if there are any repairs that need to be taken care of. In many cases, getting roofing repairs handled early on will prevent damage from becoming significantly worse, which can make a major difference in the ultimate lifespan of your roof. These regular inspections are especially important if your roof has wooden shingles, but they’re imperative with asphalt and architectural shingles as well.

Cleaning your shingle roof regularly is very important as well. Over time, things like branches, leaves, dirt, and random debris will likely accumulate up there. If you don’t clean the roof periodically, those accumulated objects will make it much easier for moisture to linger on and around your shingles when it rains. When that happens, it accelerates the deterioration of the shingles, often resulting in leaks and other damage.

Finally, the climate where you live can play a significant role in the life expectancy of your shingle roof. If you live in an area that regularly experiences extreme temperatures, powerful winds, or heavy rain or snowfall, it will be harder for your roof to hold up as long as it otherwise would. For this reason, many homeowners in harsher climates tend to splurge for architectural shingles when having a new roof installed, as they tend to be more durable and weather-resistant. Fortunately, the climate in the Trenton area is fairly moderate, although the winters can be somewhat harsh. As long as you have your roof inspected before the freezing temperatures and snow arrive, your shingles should be able to withstand the cold season.

Downriver's Trusted Roofing Professionals

When you need a roofing repair or roof replacement in the Downriver area, you can always call MCM Services. We’re a family-owned business, and we’ve been proudly serving this community since 1981. When we install new shingle roofs, we use high-quality CertainTeed LANDMARK® PRO shingles, which are strong and resilient. If you’d like to schedule an appointment or learn more about what we offer, contact our offices today at (734) 676-6343!

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