the longevity of wood shingles

The Longevity of Wood Shingles

Wood shingle roof longevity is one of the many reasons homeowners are choosing this unique and remarkable roofing material. What is the life expectancy of a wood roof? It depends on the material. The life expectancy of cedar roofs is different than that of teak or wallaba. However, the wood shake roof life is almost always longer than that of asphalt and more common roofing materials. Here’s a look at all the details behind the life expectancy of cedar shake siding, teak and wallaba.

How Long Do Wood Shingles Last on a Roof?

While the price of custom wood shingles may initially exceed that of alternatives, it’s important to remember what you’re getting in longevity, too. At Custom Shingles, we offer three main types of wood shingles: cedar, teak and wallaba. The lifespan of each should far surpass that of more traditional roofing materials, which means you actually get more value in addition to the unique and attractive appearance when you choose custom wood shingles over other materials.

In neutral climates, you can reasonably expect the following lifespans out of custom wood shingles:

  • Cedar: 30 to 50 years or more
  • Wallaba: 35 to 60 years or more
  • Teak: 50 to 80 years or more

Even in more challenging climates, you can reasonably expect a minimum of 30 years out of custom wood shingles. Alternatively, the asphalt shingles you’re more likely to see will last only 15 to 20 years at best.

Getting the Most Out of Your Custom Wood Shingles

Naturally, you’ll get longer performance out of your wood shingles if you take better care of them. In most cases, maintenance of your wood-shingle roof should be relatively simple and straightforward. The two main tasks that should concern you are trimming away trees and cleaning out gutters.

You don’t want falling debris to potentially damage or dislodge your wood shingles, so make sure trees around your roof are regularly trimmed. Yes, wood shingles are strong and durable, and it would take a rather large branch to do serious damage. But large branches can be an issue with mature trees during storms or other natural events.

How does cleaning out gutters affect your wood shingles? You want them to be able to breathe, and clogged gutters lead to buildup along the edges of your roof. This buildup prevents your wood shingles from breathing, which can lead to shorter-than-average lifespans for your individual shingles.

Make Replacements as Needed

When you consider a roof lifespan that can stretch out to 80 years or more, it’s important to make individual shingle replacements as needed along the way. For example, a major storm or neglect might destroy a shingle or a portion of your roof before the entire roof needs replacing. In these cases, you’ll find that shingle replacements are relatively fast and easy, and the new shingles will blend in naturally with your older, existing shingles.

The cost of a partial roof replacement with custom wood shingles is also relatively inexpensive when compared to other materials. When you blend the longer lifespan of wood shingles with the low cost of replacing individual shingles, you begin to see just how much value custom wood shingles deliver.

Longevity Plus Other Benefits

The value of wood shingles isn’t solely tied to longevity. Custom wood shingles deliver a series of other benefits and savings you won’t enjoy with other roofing materials, including:

  • Resale value: A custom wood shingle roof creates a dramatic and unique look that prospective buyers won't be able to forget. A wood shingle roof can transform an ordinary house into an extraordinary asset that's far more valuable on the open market.
  • Insulation: Wood shingles provide a natural insulation you won’t get with asphalt or other more common roofing materials. The added insulation helps lower heating and cooling costs, which is especially helpful in older homes that tend to be drafty.
  • Accuracy: For older homes, an asphalt roof or similar material won’t provide the historic accuracy the structure deserves. If you have a home that’s 100 years or older, a custom wood shingle roof can make visitors feel like they’re truly stepping back in time. This era-appropriate look is also helpful for increasing resale value.

Patented Tools, Beautiful Results

At Custom Shingles, we help homeowners achieve the beautiful look of custom wood shingle roofs. Back in 1982, we built our own steaming and bending equipment for a cottage-style restoration job. The results were extraordinary. We received a patent for our equipment, and we’ve been creating similarly outstanding results ever since. If you’re interested in getting the incredible look of custom wood shingles for your home, get in touch with us today.

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