What Type of Roofs Last the Longest?

What Type of Roofs Last the Longest?


As a homeowner, it’s worth researching which type of roofs last the longest. Other than your walls and foundation, few other aspects last forever. 

Although roofs are designed to endure and protect your home, their average lifespan is about 20 years. Several factors play into your roof’s health and lifespan, but is there one that lasts forever? 

You may not have a choice over the roofing materials offered by your builder or the roof on a home that you’re interested in buying. However, you can maximize an existing roof’s lifespan, or plan to replace it with a newer, long-lasting material when the time comes. 

A Breakdown of a Roof’s Longevity 

Most rooftops are assembled with tiles or shingles made of various materials. The longest-lasting materials are slate and metal. The following types of roofs last the longest: 

How Long Do Most Roof Materials Last?

  • Slate — 60+ years
  • Metal — 50+ years
  • Cedar shakes — 30+ years
  • Asphalt Shingles — 20 years 
  • Flat membrane — 20+ years

Of course, the lifespan depends on the quality of the materials—a cheaper slate tile might not last as long as the highest quality wood shakes installed by a skilled professional—as well as the climate and wear on the roof. 

How to Choose Your Roof 

There are a few elements to take into account when you’re choosing a roofing style. You can make the following decisions on your own: budget, color, design aesthetic, etc. However, if you’re going to invest in something as expensive as a roof, it’s best to consult with roofing professionals so that you can make the best choice.

Consider the following for your rooftop: 

  • Regional weather and climate. The effects of snow are different from extreme heat, and tornado or hurricane zones can affect your choices. 
  • Roof angles and size. Some materials are better for flat roofs or those with chimneys and irregularities. 
  • House design. Clay tiles on a modern home may look strange, just like industrial metal may clash with a quaint cottage. Certain roof styles, such as the ones mentioned above, will enhance your home rather than detract from your curb appeal. 
  • Maintenance. Busy or hands-off homeowners might choose materials that need the least amount of maintenance to keep a long lifespan. 
  • Budget. Not only will your budget dictate the materials you’ll choose, but also their quality. Asphalt shingles may be popular, but they come in different prices and quality types, so it’s vital to ask your roofer for a run-down on prices. 
  • Longevity. If you plan to stay in this home for the rest of your life, longevity will matter more to you. If you plan to flip or sell your home, you may be looking for a more affordable option, but it may not last as long. 

The above categories will impact your roof’s longevity, so be sure to talk to a roofing expert before settling on a choice. 

Ask The Roof Doctor 

If you aren’t sure how long your roof might last, it’s best to consult with a professional. After all, just because it can last 20 years, doesn’t mean it will. Contact The Roof Doctor for a free consultation and a roofing job that will last. We serve Salt Lake City, Ogden, Layton, Tooele, Bountiful, Orem, Provo, and everywhere in between!

Share This Content