How Long Does A Roof Last In Houston?


With our wild weather and harsh conditions (even in winter now apparently), our commercial roofs must be able to truly weather the storm.

As we get into the details of how long a commercial roof lasts there are a few key questions and assumptions we need to have answered that go along with it.

The first – being what is the roof made of and how does this impact the life of the roof?

The second – How do we know it is time to replace a roof? (This may seem easy but looks are deceiving).

Finally, the third – how much does a roof replacement cost in Houston?

Let’s get started!

What are the most common types of commercial roofs in Houston and how long do they last?

On average the most common types of commercial roofs in Houston are composed of metal, EPDM or TPO plastics.

The most common commercial roofs in Houston are metal roofs, which last between 10-50 years depending on the type of metal.

Metal roofs can have a very long life if properly maintained and cared for. Commercial metal roofs are installed in large durable metal roof panels. The most common way a metal roof will fail is due to gaps or holes causing metal roof leaks and moisture around screws and panel seams. When you hire a metal roof contractor or dealing with metal roof repair you need to make sure you are using a highly experienced roofing company, such as ourselves: Royal American Services. We have seen and repaired every size, shape, and kind of metal roof Houston has to offer. When you work with us you know you are in good hands with truly first-class service.

EPDM roofing and TPO roofing can both last anywhere from 5 to 20 years although this is very dependent on factors such as the manufacturer, design life, and installation quality.  These roofing membranes are energy-efficient roofing due to their reflective nature. Saving you money on cooling in the hot Houston summers. Due to these materials being relatively new to the market there are few studies done yet to fully understand how they will perform over an extended period. However, many roofing contractors and building owners in Houston have had success with these materials so it is something worth looking at for your property. We are also proud to offer both EPDM roofing and TPO roofing so if you are looking for replacement installation of either one, please feel free to visit our services page.

The most expensive option that still needs to be discussed is Tile roofing which typically lasts 30+ years.  Any quality tile roof on a commercial building is worth its weight in gold. Tile roofs are one of the most expensive to repair or replace but can last decades if installed and maintained properly. We can also handle all your needs for tile roof repair or flat roof repair in Houston.

Tip: Always ask what warranties come along with the roofing materials.

How do we know it is time to replace a roof?

The old saying “if it’s not broke don’t fix it” does not apply here. There are many factors that should be considered before replacing your roof and if you ignore them, you could be in for a big surprise when you must replace the roof anyway. We absolutely recommend having a professional bi-annual inspection on your commercial roof, and supplement that by having a preventative maintenance plan in place to spot issues before they get worse. 

We’ve listed our top 3 signs that it may be time to look into a roof replacement in Houston:

  1. If you spot damage, start looking into your options immediately. Most roofs in Houston will have at least one or two repairs throughout their lifespan. The key is catching the damage as soon as you can and then getting a professional to help assess it.
  2. If you notice water pooling anywhere on your building, this could be a sign of underlying issues with your roof. Water should always run off the side of your building! There may be other factors at play such as gutter issues, eave troughs that need cleaning, and in some cases, the flashing may be compromised which is a much larger and costly job. Any sort of leak detection immediately warrants attention, and you should call your local roofing expert immediately.
  3. Is your roof in close proximity to another building? Firetrucks take roughly 5-7 minutes to arrive at most locations across Houston. If you have a fire on your roof due to a faulty chimney or other factors the entire building could be completely destroyed before help arrives. This is a massive risk that can be mitigated, and, in this case, it is 100% worth having a new commercial roof installed or ensuring a regular inspection plan is in place as soon as possible.

Tip: Make sure you have an experienced contractor assess your problem so that you know for certain what action needs to be taken.

How much does a roof cost to replace in Houston?

Most of the cost for a roof replacement in Houston will come from the material itself. Metal roofs are typically around $3/sqft which means if you have an average size 12,000 sqft building you can expect to pay roughly $36,000.

EPDM roofs are typically cheaper at about $2/sqft which would make your costs at $24,000. TPO is considered to be one of the most expensive options at roughly $4-$5 / sqft or about $48-$60,000 on the high end.

Tile roofs are by far the most expensive option ranging anywhere from $15-$25 per square foot depending on the type and style of tile installed. If you were looking for solid color tiles with no designs, the cost would be closer to $15/sqft.

Tip: It is always smart to get at least three quotes on your roof replacement in Houston before you make a final decision. This will not only help ensure you are getting the best price but can also help you understand what level of workmanship each contractor has for their craft.

How much does it cost to repair a commercial roof in Houston?

Houston has a fair amount of hail damage each year, so it is important to be aware that this type of damage may not be covered by your insurance. If you are insured, you will need to get an official report from your contractor about the extent of the damage. If less than 50% of the roof has hail or wind damage, this may fall under regular maintenance and not be covered by insurance. The cost to repair your commercial roof can vary greatly depending on the damage present and which material the company works with.

Repairs can range anywhere from $1-$2 per square foot depending on the type and severity of the damage.

Tip: Make sure you know the difference between a complete roof replacement versus a simple repair. You can ask your contractor to send you pictures or even write up an official quote before they begin any type of work on your property. This way you won’t have any surprises later down the line and will know exactly what needs to be done for optimal results.

In summary - Roofing Material Life Expectancy in Houston

  • Metal Roofs – 10-50 years | ~$3/sqft
  • EPDM or TPO Roofs – 5-20 years | ~$2/sqft or ~$4-5/sqft (respectively)
  • Tile Roofs – 30+ years | ~$15-25/sqft

What material is considered ideal roofing in Houston? Easy answer – depends on your budget and risk tolerance. Everyone has their own unique situations, and we will guide you through these factors to help you better understand which solution is the best one for your home or business. One thing is for sure though – make sure you get a completely free on-site inspection
from RAS! The only way to determine what you need is by walking your roof and fully understanding your risks and budget.

Ideally, you want the longest-lasting strongest material to help withstand Houston storms and harsh weather. However, we know just how expensive that can get, but we also know exactly how to design and build commercial roofing to weather Houston storms. When choosing your new roofing contractor in Houston, you owe it to yourself and your property to do extensive research into who you go with. When you work with us, we will make sure you get the most bang for your buck, especially since we have been repairing and replacing commercial roofing in Houston for nearly four decades! We’ve seen it all and repaired it all – so why not hire the best commercial roofer in Houston?

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A second opinion never hurts. Especially when its free.

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