Is Asphalt the Longest Lasting Roof Material?

Average Lifespan of Asphalt Roofs

The average lifespan of asphalt roofs is 20 to 30 years. However, this can vary depending on several factors that influence the roof's durability and overall longevity.

In Arizona, the following factors may impact how long your asphalt roof lasts:

  • Quality of materials used
  • Installation techniques
  • High temperatures
  • UV radiation
  • Maintenance practices
  • Roof slope and drainage

Asphalt roofs have become the most popular type of residential roofing in Arizona and across the US primarily due to their cost-effectiveness and ease of installation. Additionally, asphalt shingles offer a reliable average lifespan with relatively low maintenance, making them an attractive option for many homeowners.

However, are asphalt roofs the longest-lasting roofing material? No. Keep reading to learn about other roofing materials that may last longer than asphalt.

Metal Roofs

Metal roofs are an alternative to asphalt shingles, known for their impressive durability and longevity. On average, metal roofs last between 40 to 70 years, significantly outperforming the lifespan of asphalt roofs.

Made from steel, aluminum, or copper, metal roofs offer strong resistance to extreme weather conditions, including high winds, heavy rain, and hail. Additionally, metal roofing is fire-resistant, making it a safe option for areas prone to wildfires.

Why Asphalt Over Metal

However, despite these advantages, the higher initial cost of metal roofing can deter many homeowners. Furthermore, because the installation process for metal roofs is more complex than for asphalt shingles, often requiring specialized skills and tools, it usually comes with higher labor costs, making metal roofing an investment that only some are willing to make despite its long-term benefits.

Tile Roofs

Tile roofs are another durable roofing option that surpasses asphalt in terms of longevity. Typically made from clay or concrete, tile roofs can last anywhere from 50 to over 100 years. In fact, there are tile roofs in Europe and Asia that are hundreds of years old!

Their exceptional durability makes them resistant to rotting, insect damage, and extreme weather conditions. Additionally, tile roofs offer excellent thermal insulation, keeping homes cooler in hot climates.

Here in Arizona, tile roofs are prevalent because they are long-lasting, easy to maintain, and aesthetic, blending beautifully into the Southwestern landscape.

Why Asphalt Over Tile

One of the primary reasons homeowners might hesitate to choose tile roofing is its weight; the structural support of the building must be strong enough to bear the additional load, potentially requiring costly reinforcements. Additionally, like metal roofs, the initial cost of materials and installation can be significantly higher than asphalt shingles.

Despite their long-lasting nature and energy efficiency, the expense and structural requirements can make tile roofs less accessible to many homeowners, who may opt for the more affordable and easier-to-install asphalt shingles.

What About Architectural Shingles?

Architectural shingles, also known as dimensional or laminated shingles, are a premium variety of asphalt shingles that offer enhanced durability and aesthetic appeal. These shingles typically have a lifespan of 30 to 50 years, surpassing the longevity of traditional asphalt shingles.

Constructed with multiple layers of material fused together, architectural shingles provide better resistance to wind and impact damage. Given Arizona's high temperatures and UV radiation, they are an excellent option for homeowners seeking a more resilient and visually appealing roof compared to standard asphalt shingles.

Asphalt Shingles Remain Many Homeowners Top Choice

While many different types of roofing material are on the market, asphalt shingles reign supreme. At Lyons Roofing, we appreciate the versatility and convenience of asphalt shingles, especially in residential settings. Most homeowners replacing their roofs will likely move before needing another roof replacement. As such, opting for the more economical but still reliable and aesthetically attractive option is often the best choice.

Contact Lyons Roofing online to learn more about asphalt shingle roofs and whether they are a good fit for your home.