10 September

How Long You Should Expect A Commercial Roof To Last

How Long You Should Expect a Commercial Roof to Last 

In this post, you will learn how long you should expect a commercial roof to last. Read along to learn everything you need to know about commercial roofing.

When considering the lifespan of your commercial roof, several factors can come into play. In general, your commercial roof’s lifespan is anywhere from ten to forty years. Still, factors such as the type of roof, materials used, and even weather conditions can affect the number of years your roof will stay in optimal condition.  

Follow along as we explore the several different factors that come into play when thinking about your commercial roof’s longevity. Also, we will look at ways you can assist in prolonging the lifespan of your roof. So, how long should you expect a commercial roof to last? Let’s find out.

Maintaining your commercial roof

Materials Matter

The type of building materials used plays a huge part in the longevity of your commercial roof. Different building materials used in constructing your roof have their lifespan, which affects the lifespan of both your roof and your building. We have broken down the common types of material used in constructing a commercial roof and their expected lifespans below: 

  • Asphalt: Expected lifespan of 20-40 years 
  • Metal: Expected lifespan of 30-45 years 
  • Polyvinyl Chloride(PVC): Expected lifespan is 30-30 years 
  • Ethylene propylene diene terpolymer(EPDM): Expected lifespan is 22-35 years 
  • Thermoplastic polyolefin(TPO): Expected lifespan is 22-30 years 

Please note that other factors come into play when considering the lifespan of your commercial roof and that the expected lifespan is an estimate only.  

Roof Type And Installation

Roofing type is less of a factor in the longevity of your commercial roof than you might think, but it can be assumed that a flat roof, being more easily accessible and easier to maintain, may last longer than sloped roofing. Many other factors contribute to the longevity of your roofing, and there are situations where a flat roof may not be the option for you.  

Installation, however, plays a massive role in the lifespan of your roofing. The improper or inexperienced installation of your roof will always harm your roof’s longevity. It is vital to hire a licensed and accredited roofing specialist that is experienced with both the type of roofing you require and the area you live in. We highly recommend getting a few estimates before deciding on a roofing specialist, as well as speaking to some of the businesses around your commercial building for recommendations before you decide. Remember, cutting on your roof during installation could end with more expensive repairs later on, and will shorten the lifespan of your roof.  

Common Factors That Affect The Lifespan Of A Commercial Roof

IN addition to the type of materials used, many other common factors can affect the lifespan of your roof. Again, these are only factors that come into play, and the presence of one or even a few of these factors does not necessarily mean that your commercial roof’s lifespan will be impacted, but all are worth keeping in mind. 

We’ve listed some of the more common factors that could affect the longevity of your roof below: 

  • Weather: This is one of those factors that you cannot control. Extreme weather conditions will always be an unavoidable factor when it comes to maintaining your roof, and any extreme weather event such as blizzards, heavy rainstorms, and natural disasters has the potential to impact the condition of your commercial roof. You must check your roofing after all extreme weather events, and we highly recommend an inspection by a licensed roofing specialist who may see the damage that you miss. 
  • Maintenance: Routine maintenance and inspections by trained professionals are a necessary step to keeping your roof in good condition for years. Basic maintenance such as cleaning your roofing, gutters, and drains also affects the lifetime of your roof. 
  • Ventilation: It is vital to make sure that the attic spaces, air duct systems, and all ventilation under your roofing are maintained. Without proper maintenance, these spaces become humid, collecting moisture over time that can cause mold and mildew. Not only can this affect the lifespan of your roof, but it can also seriously impact the health of individuals in the building or even cause death if left too long. 
  • Slop: This is a concern for all roofing but is more prevalent in flat commercial roofing. Water with nowhere to go can end up in standing pools, causing algae and mold buildup to sit on your roof and can cause serious damage over time if not resolved. Regular cleaning and maintenance will resolve this issue without risk of damage. 

While these factors come into play, it is essential to remember that this is not a complete list. Consult a roofing specialist if you believe you may have other issues with your roofing that might impact the lifespan of your roof. 


There are many factors to consider when it comes to your commercial roof, and it is vital to consider them carefully when choosing the right type of roofing for you. Now that you know some of the factors, you can better estimate how long you should expect a commercial roof to last. If your roof needs attention in the West Orange, New Jersey area, call us today to set up an appointment. 

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