Residential and commercial roofing materials are chosen based on various factors, including the design of the building, your personal preference, and the region’s climate. Roof materials have an average rood life expectancy, just like any other building material. The following factors are among them:

  • Roof Pitch
  • Sun Exposure
  • Extreme Weather
  • Roof Ventilation
  • Poor Installation

 A contractor’s installation technique can also affect how long roofing materials last. Roofs that are improperly installed will develop problems throughout their lifetime. It is possible to prolong the life of a roof by taking the necessary measures. However, each roofing material has its own lifespan. The following table lists currently widely used roofing materials and their lifespans.

 Asphalt Shingles

A 3-tab or 25-year Shingles shingle is the most basic and least expensive asphalt roofing option for sloping roofs. Depending on the environment and slope of the roof, a 3-tab asphalt roof can last from 10 to 20 years.

Architectural shingles, also known as 30-Year and 40-Year Dimensional or Laminate Shingles, are thicker, more durable, and longer-lasting than their entry-level counterparts, three-tab strip shingles. Depending on the environment, architectural shingle roofs can last anywhere from 15 to 25 years.

Metal Roofing

Standing The seam is the most popular residential metal roofing system featuring concealed fasteners. When installed correctly, a typical standing seam metal roof will last anywhere from 30 to 50 years.

The best roofing materials for severe desert-like climates with frequent temperature changes or heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures can be metal roofs. They are energy-efficient, durable, and provide an excellent solution for shingle roofs subject to ice dams.

Clay and Concrete Tiles

Premium homes benefit greatly from clay tiles. To support the weight of clay tiles, a roof installation contractor must use a roof frame designed specifically for that purpose. The lifespan of a clay tile roof should range from 50 to 100 years. The wind uplift rating of clay tiles is normally 120-130 MPH. However, if any tiles are damaged, loose, or missing, it can create a hazardous situation in a hurricane.

Like clay tiles, concrete tiles are heavy. The lifespan of these tiles is expected to be 40 to 75 years, meaning they are a less expensive option than tile roofing.

Shakes and Cedar Shingles

Comparable in cost to metal roofing, cedar shingles and shakes are a common roofing option for beach homes and Cape Cod-style houses. Cedar shake roofs are designed to last 25 to 30 years on average. With regular maintenance and staining, however, a cedar shake roof can last around 30-40 years.

A cedar single roof can have a wind uplift rating of up to 173 MPH, while a cedar shake roof can achieve a wind uplift rating of up to 245 MPH with a proper installation. Wood roofs are extremely resilient and durable in protecting from hurricanes and heavy snow loads.

Natural Slate

Slate roofs are expensive, heavy, and long-lasting. A quality slate roof can last anywhere from 50 to 100 years, depending on the slate tile thickness and grade. Slate roofs are commonly installed on premium homes and fancy mini-Mansions. Slate roofs have excellent wind uplift properties, but a few pieces of slate flying off a roof during a hurricane can be extremely dangerous due to their weight and sharp edges.

Composite Roofs

Synthetic composite shingles and tiles are made to resemble natural slate tiles and cedar shakes. Composite tiles are strong, lightweight, and can last 30 to 50 years or longer with proper installation. Cost-wise, they are comparable to standing seam metal roofs. A synthetic composite tile roofing system such as that from DaVinci is rated to withstand straight-line winds of up to 110 MPH and hurricane-grade wind uplift. A recycled rubber tile roofing system from EuroShield also offers an actual hail damage warranty.

EPDM Rubber

Our work has been influenced by the fact that many houses have flat, low-sloped roofs, so we have included a list of common roofing membranes and their lifespans for homes with low-slope roofs. Residential homes in the US are typically covered with EPDM rubber flat roof membranes. The seams make it weak and short-lived.
Either EPDM roofs are glued together or have tape connecting the seams. Both EPDM roofs and rubber roofs frequently fail at their seams. The lifespan of a mattress is expected to be between five and fifteen years, typically requiring repairing leaky seams.

PVC Membrane

Quality PVC (polyvinyl chloride or vinyl) membranes like the IB Roof have a lifespan of 20 to 30 years. PVC membranes have a thickness of at least 50 mils (and can be as thick as 80 mils). Among its features are flexibility, durability, energy efficiency, and long-term durability. Roofs with low slopes and flat surfaces can be covered in a single-layer PVC membrane. PVC is a cost-efficient, durable, and long-lasting alternative to other popular and ubiquitous low-slope roofing systems like EPDM rubber, torch-down, BUR, and rolled roofs.

Thanks to the thickness of the reinforced PVC membrane and its hot air welded seams that form a strong permanent bond (the seams are the strongest point in a PVC membrane, while the seams are the weakest point in EPDM rubber), this system can often last twice as long as EPDM rubber roofs.
High-end PVC roofs are also more durable and longer-lasting than TPO membrane roofs (PVC and TPO are most often compared side-by-side). That said, both PVC and TPO roofs are superior to the most popular single-ply membrane, EPDM rubber.

TPO Membrane

PVC membranes look like TPO (thermoplastic olefin) membranes, but TPO utilizes a completely different formulation. Single-ply membrane roofs are typically constructed of PVC or TPO. Hot air welding provides strong and durable seams for both systems. TPO membrane roofs have an average lifespan between 15 and 25 years. Like PVC, TPO roofs are energy-efficient and can last longer than an EPDM rubber roof (the market’s most popular single-ply roofing membrane).