How Long Do Shingle Roofs Last?

Three-tab asphalt are the most common form of roofing shingles. Warranty periods vary by their type and quality and can last anywhere between 20 and 40 years and more.

Owens Corning, for example, offers a 25-year limited warranty with their three-tab roofing shingle products. After 5 years, the warranty is pro-rated. That’s their standard warranty.

If you purchase a Preferred Protection Warranty Coverage … the 25-year limited warranty on the product still applies, but the pro-rated coverage period doesn’t kick in until 15 years.

Asphalt Roofing Shingles

Architectural asphalt shingles, such as those pictured right, are a step above three-tab asphalt shingles, and therefore longer warranty periods are normally associated with the high-end laminated sheets, which blend durability with decorative features. In most cases, asphalt roofing shingles are designed to last for 30 to 50 years. They withstand extreme temperatures and weather events…and are often available with a lifetime warranty.

Again, looking at Owens Corning products, all of their architectural-asphalt shingles come with a limited lifetime warranty. On the Standard Warranty Coverage plan, pro-rated coverage kicks in after 10 years. Under Owens Corning Preferred Protection Warranty Coverage, that’s kicked up to 50 years.

Solar Shingles

Solar shingles generally carry a 20-25 year warranty, with the focus on power output.

Uni-Solar, for example, offers a 25-year power output warranty for its solar shingles. According to the company, during the first 10 years, the product shall produce at least 92 percent of the minimum power output rating from the date of sale.

After 25 years, the product shall produce at least 80 percent of the minimum power output rating from the date of sale.

DOW’s Powerhouse Solar shingle, meanwhile, offers a 20-year product warranty.

Clay Roof Shingles

Clay roof shingles are very durable once they’re on the roof..and many tile manufacturers will warranty the shingles for 50 years.

However, clay roof shingles are breakable in shipping — or even when being applied to a roof. The shingles also may break if a branch falls on a roof..or it it’s walked on.

Wood Roof Shingles

Wood roof shingles have a reputation for not lasting as long as petroleum-based shingles. While they may look better, deterioration is said to be more rapid. One explanation for this is because wood roofing shingles were once made (before 1950) from the heartwood (the heart of the tree). Today, wood roofing shingles are often made with wood closer to the outside of the tree, and therefore the individual shingles are of lesser quality. Treating with a wood preservative every few years and replacing damaged shingles will prolong the life of the roof…perhaps up to 20 years.

That being said, there are several manufacturers who will offer limited warranties from 25 to 30 years, depending on the product.

Learn more details about differences in the manufacturing quality of shingles and differences in architectural shingles with our YouTube videos below.