How Long Does a Roof Last in Virginia?

Stephen Vernon
April 3, 2023

How often should my roof be replaced?

We recently gave an estimate to an apartment complex owner who needed multiple new roofs for his buildings.

The roofs were only 10 years old.

How long does a shingle roof last?

Architectural shingles are supposed to last at least 20-25 years.

Under correct installation.

That was the problem with these buildings.

The landlord couldn’t get in contact with the previous roofer and now had to replace the roofs again.

With correct installation according to the manufacturer’s guidelines, a shingle roof should last at least 20-25 years.

You may have a metal roof or some time of specialty roofing which impacts how often your roof should be replaced.

Check out a previous blog post on how often you should get a roof replacement.

You shouldn’t find yourself replacing your roof every 10 years. That’s not good.

How do you know when it’s time to replace your roof?

There are a few things to look out for if you’ve got the sneaking suspicion that it’s time to replace your roof.

  • You might be in an unfortunate position and have an active leak in your roof.
  • Maybe you see missing shingles on your roof.
  • You see ponding water or the residue from water staining on your roof.
  • Sagging in your roofline.

Have you had roof repair work done on your roof previously?

Do you want to know how much longer to expect out of the lifespan of your roof?

The best way to determine how long your roof should last and when it’s time to replace your roof would be to schedule an estimate with a local roofing company.

Our sales representatives will be able to tell you if your problems will be solved with a repair or a roof replacement.

You can find many guides online that will give tips and tricks on what to look for when you’re curious about replacing your roof.

If you want to get a roof inspection to find out more information about your roof – give us a call or fill out an estimate form and we will set you up with a roof inspection for your home!

Call for Your Inspection Today!

Can a roof last 20 years?

The easy answer is yes! With proper installation and properly installed ventilation for your roof, you can expect your roof to last over 20 years!

There are some factors that would impact the lifespan of your roof.

Materials used for your new roof

Think of this as your 3-tab shingles vs. metal or clay roofing.

Quality of materials used.

Not all materials are the same. You’ll see this reflected in the price.

If any underlayment is used

You’ll find some quick installations that don’t use underlayment.

Underlayment is another barrier protecting your home from water.

The slope of your roof

More flat surfaces can accumulate water.

Steeper pitches allow for quick water runoff.


Helping to keep a consistent temperature.

Correct airflow helps to reduce the risk of overheating or freezing.

Roof maintenance

Quick checks to catch repairs.

Weather conditions

How often your roof is exposed to extreme storms.

Snowstorms vs hail storms or tornadoes.

Workmanship of installation

Did the installer have any qualifications?

What is the longest-lasting roof?

You’ll commonly find that the longest-lasting roofing materials would be concrete/clay or slate tiles.

They have a great lifespan yet they’re not as durable as a metal or asphalt roof.

How long does a metal roof last?

Typically you’ll find that a metal roof will last between 40-70 years.

How long does a slate roof last?

The common lifespan of slate roofs will last between 60-150 years.

Concrete/clay roofs can last 100+ years as well.

There are problems that come with these roofing materials.

  • These materials are heavy. You’ll want to check to see if your home can support the added weight of these roofing materials.
  • Installation for these roofs takes a long time. You’ll pay higher fees in labor in addition to the higher cost of the roof itself.
  • While they’re long-lasting, they’re fragile and there are fewer repairers that can work on these types of roofs.
  • In addition to fewer repairers, you’ll find fewer installers as well. You don’t want just anyone installing this type of roof. High costs are associated with this roof style.

There are alternatives to putting on a clay/slate roof! Check out our specialty roofing options!

How long should a new roof last without leaking?

If your roof is going to leak after installation, you’ll typically find that it’ll do so soon!

Rain is a great proof of correct installation.

If you’ve hired a roofing contractor that has proven quality, you shouldn’t have to worry about a leak in your new roof.

Typically you’ll find leaks in common areas like:

  • Chimneys
  • Flashing
  • Penetrations

If you have a wide Chimney (over 30 inches), you’ll want to make sure you have a cricket.

In 2012, the International Building Code states these types of chimneys must have a cricket installed.

If your home is older, during replacement you should have a cricket installed so that you’re protected from potential water ponding and leaks.

What are some DIY roof maintenance tips?

We’ve written a blog post that goes through 9 tips for Do It Yourself roof maintenance.

You don’t always need to hire a professional for these maintenance items.

You can extend the life of your roof yourself and save yourself some money while you’re at it!

Check out our roof maintenance tips here!

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