Estimated Life Expediencies of Home Systems

Estimated Life Expectancy

Surface preparation and paint quality are the most important determinants of a paint's life expectancy. Ultraviolet (UV) rays via sunshine can shorten life expectancy.  Additionally, conditions of high humidity indoors or outdoors can affect the lifespan of these components, which is why they should be inspected and maintained seasonally.
 
ADHESIVES, CAULK & PAINTS
YEARS
Caulking (interior & exterior)5 to 10
Construction Glue20+
Paint (exterior)7 to 10
Paint (interior)10 to 15
Roofing Adhesives/Cements15+
Sealants8
Stains3 to 8
 
 
Appliance life expectancy depends to a great extent on the use it receives. Furthermore, consumers often replace appliances long before they become worn out due to changes in styling, technology and consumer preferences.
 
APPLIANCES      YEARS

Air Conditioner (window)

5 to 7
Compactor (trash)6
Dehumidifier8
Dishwasher9
Disposal (food waste)12
Dryer Vent  (plastic)5
Dryer Vent  (steel)20
Dryer (clothes)13
Exhaust Fans10
Freezer   10 to 20
Gas Oven10 to 18
Hand Dryer10 to 12
Humidifier (portable)8
Microwave Oven9
Range/Oven Hood14
Electric Range13 to 15
Gas Range   15 to 17
Refrigerator9 to 13
Swamp Cooler5 to 15
Washing Machine5 to 15
Whole-House Vacuum System20
 
 
Modern kitchens today are larger and more elaborate.  Together with the family room, they now form the “great room.” 
 
CABINETRY & STORAGE   YEARS
Bathroom Cabinets 50+ 
Closet Shelves 100+
Entertainment Center/Home Office10
Garage/Laundry Cabinets70+
Kitchen Cabinets50
Medicine Cabinet25+
Modular (stock manufacturing-type)50 
 
 
Walls and ceilings last the full lifespan of the home.
 
CEILINGS & WALLS
YEARS
Acoustical Tile Ceiling40+ (older than 25 years may contain asbestos)
Ceramic Tile   70+
Concrete75+
Gypsum75
Wood Paneling20 to 50
Suspended Ceiling25+
 
 
Natural stone countertops, which are less expensive than they were just a few years ago, are becoming more popular, and one can expect them to last a lifetime. Cultured marble countertops have a shorter life expectancy, however.
 
COUNTERTOPSYEARS
Concrete50
Cultured Marble   20
Natural Stone100+
Laminate20 to 30
Resin10+
Tile100+
Wood100+
 
 
Decks are exposed to a wide range of conditions in different climates, from wind and hail in some areas, to relatively consistent, dry weather in others. See FASTENERS & STEEL section for fasteners.
 
DECKSYEARS 
Deck Planks15
Composite8 to 25
Structural Wood10 to 30
 
 
Exterior fiberglass, steel and wood doors will last as long as the house, while vinyl and screen doors have a shorter life expectancy. The gaskets/weatherstripping of exterior doors may have to be replaced every 5 to 8 years.
 
DOORSYEARS
Closet (interior) 100+
Fiberglass (exterior) 100+
Fire-Rated Steel (exterior)100+
French (interior) 30 to 50
Screen (exterior)30
Sliding Glass/Patio (exterior)20 (for roller wheel/track repair/replacement)
Vinyl (exterior)20
Wood (exterior)100+
Wood (hollow-core interior)20 to 30
Wood (solid-core interior)30 to 100+
 
 
Copper-plated wiring, copper-clad aluminum, and bare copper wiring are expected to last a lifetime, whereas electrical accessories and lighting controls, such as dimmer switches, may need to be replaced after 10 years.  GFCIs could last 30 years, but much less if tripped regularly.
 
Remember that faulty, damaged or overloaded electrical circuits or equipment are the leading cause of house fires, so they should be inspected regularly and repaired or updated as needed.
 
ELECTRICALYEARS
Accessories10+
Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCIs)30
Bare Copper100+
Bulbs (compact fluorescent)8,000 to 10,000+ hours
Bulbs (halogen)4,000 to 8,000+ hours
Bulbs (incandescent)1,000 to 2,000+ hours
Bulbs (LED)30,000 to 50,000+ hours
Copper-Clad Aluminum100+
Copper-Plated100+
Fixtures40
Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs)up to 30
Lighting Controls30+
Residential Propane Backup Generators12
Service Panel60
Solar Panels20 to 30
Solar System Batteries3 to 12
Wind Turbine Generators20
 
 
Floor and roof trusses and laminated strand lumber are durable household components, and engineered trim may last 30 years.
 
ENGINEERED LUMBERYEARS
Engineered Joists80+
Laminated Strand Lumber100+
Laminated Veneer Lumber80+
Trusses100+

  

Fastener manufacturers do not give lifespans for their products because they vary too much based on where the fasteners are installed in a home, the materials in which they're installed, and the local climate and environment.  However, inspectors can use the guidelines below to make educated judgments about the materials they inspect.
 
FASTENERS, CONNECTORS & STEEL
YEARS
Adjustable Steel Columns50+
Fasteners (bright)25 to 60
Fasteners (copper)65 to 80+
Fasteners (galvanized)10+
Fasteners (electro-galvanized)15 to 45
Fasteners (hot-dipped galvanized)35 to 60
Fasteners (stainless)65 to 100+
Steel Beams200+
Steel Columns100+
Steel Plates100+
 

 

Flooring life is dependent on maintenance and the amount of foot traffic the floor endures.
 
FLOORINGYEARS
All Wood Floors100+
Bamboo100+
Brick Pavers100+
Carpet8 to 10
Concrete50+
Engineered Wood50+
Exotic Wood100+
Granite100+
Laminate15 to 25
Linoleum25
Marble100+
Other Domestic Wood100+
Slate100
Terrazzo75+
Tile75 to 100
Vinyl25
 
 
Concrete and poured-block footings and foundations will last a lifetime, assuming they were properly built.  Waterproofing with bituminous coating lasts 10 years, but if it cracks, it is immediately damaged.
 
FOUNDATIONSYEARS
Baseboard Waterproofing System50
Bituminous-Coating Waterproofing10
Concrete Block100+
Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs)100
Post and Pier20 to 65
Post and Tensioned Slab on Grade100+
Poured-Concrete Footings and Foundation100+
Slab on Grade (concrete)100
Wood Foundation5 to 40
Permanent Wood Foundation (PWF; treated)75
 
 
Framing and structural systems have extended longevity; poured-concrete systems, timber frame houses and structural insulated panels will all last a lifetime. 
 
FRAMINGYEARS
Log80 to 200
Poured-Concrete Systems100+
Steel100+
Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs)100+
Timber Frame100+
 
 
The quality and frequency of use will affect the longevity of garage doors and openers.
 
GARAGESYEARS
Garage Doors20 to 25
Garage Door Openers   10 to 15
 
 
Home technology systems have diverse life expediencies and may have to be upgraded due to evolution in technology.
 
HOME TECHNOLOGYYEARS
Built-In Audio20
Carbon Monoxide Detectors*5
Door Bells45
Home Automation System5 to 50
Intercoms20
Security System5 to 20
Smoke/Heat Detectors*less than 10 
Wireless Home Networks5+
* Batteries should be changed at least annually.
 
 
Thermostats may last 35 years but they are usually replaced before they fail due to technological improvements.
 
HVACYEARS
Air Conditioner (central)7 to 15
Air Exchanger15
Attic Fan15 to 25
Boiler40
Burner10+
Ceiling Fan5 to 10
Condenser8 to 20
Dampers20+
Dehumidifier8
Diffusers, Grilles and Registers25
Ducting60 to 100
Electric Radiant Heater40
Evaporator Cooler15 to 25
Furnace/div>15 to 25
Gas Fireplace15 to 25
Heat Exchanger10 to 15
Heat Pump10 to 15
Heat-Recovery Ventilator20
Hot-Water and Steam-Radiant Boiler40
Humidifier12
Induction and Fan-Coil Units10 to 15
Chimney Cap (concrete)100+
Chimney Cap (metal)10 to 20
Chimney Cap (mortar)15
Chimney Flue Tile40 to 120
Thermostats35
Ventilator7
 
 
As long as they are not punctured, cut or burned and are kept dry and away from UV rays, cellulose, fiberglass and foam insulation materials will last a lifetime. This is true regardless of whether they were installed as loose-fill, house wrap or batts/rolls.
 
INSULATION & INFILTRATION BARRIERSYEARS
Batts/Rolls100+
Black Paper (felt paper)15 to 30
Cellulose100+
Fiberglass100+
Foamboard100+
House wrap80+
Liquid-Applied Membrane50
Loose-Fill100+
Rock Wool100+
Wrap Tape80+
 
  
Masonry is one of the most enduring household components. Fireplaces, chimneys and brick veneers can last the lifetime of a home.
 
MASONRY & CONCRETE   YEARS
Brick100+
Insulated Concrete Forms (hybrid block)100+
Concrete Masonry Units (CMUs)100+
Man-Made Stone25
Masonry Sealant2 to 20
Stone100+
Stucco/EIFS50+
Veneer100+
 
 
Custom millwork and stair parts will last a lifetime and are typically only upgraded for aesthetic reasons.
 
MOLDING, MILLWORK & TRIMYEARS
Attic Stairs (pull-down) 50
Custom Millwork100+
Pre-Built Stairs100+
Stair Parts100+
Stairs100+
 
 
The lifetime of any wood product depends heavily on moisture intrusion.
 
PANELSYEARS
Flooring Underlayment 25
Hardboard40
Particleboard60
Plywood100
Softwood30
Oriented Strand Board (OSB)60 
Wall Panels100+
 
 
The quality of plumbing fixtures varies dramatically.  The mineral content of water can shorten the life expectancy of water heaters and clog showerheads.  Also, some finishes may require special maintenance with approved cleaning agents per the manufacturers in order to last their expected service lives.
 
PLUMBING, FIXTURES & FAUCETSYEARS
ABS and PVC Waste Pipe50 to 80
Accessible/ADA Handles100+
Acrylic Kitchen Sink50
Cast-Iron Bathtub100
Cast-Iron Waste Pipe (above ground)60
Cast-Iron Waste Pipe (below ground)50 to 60/div>
Concrete Waste Pipe100+
Copper Water Lines70
Enameled Steel Kitchen Sink5 to 10+
Faucets and Spray Hose15 to 20
Fiberglass Bathtub and Shower20
Gas Lines (black steel)75
Gas Lines (flex)30
Hose Bibs20 to 30
Instant (on-demand) Water Heater10
PEX40
Plastic Water Lines75
Saunas/Steam Room15 to 20
Sewer Grinder Pump10
Shower Enclosure/Module50
Shower Doors20
Showerheads100+ (if not clogged by mineral/other deposits)
Soapstone Kitchen Sink100+
Sump Pump7
Toilet Tank Components5
Toilets, Bidets and Urinals100+
Vent Fan (ceiling)5 to 10
Vessel Sink (stone, glass, porcelain, copper)5 to 20+
Water Heater (conventional)6 to 12
Water Line (copper)50
Water Line (plastic)50
Well Pump15
Water Softener20
Whirlpool Tub20 to 50
 
 
Radon systems have but one moving part:  the radon fan.
 
RADON SYSTEMS
YEARS
Air Exchanger15
Barometric Backdraft Damper/Fresh-Air Intake20
Caulking5 to 10
Labeling25
Manometer15
Piping50+
Radon Fan5 to 8
 
 
The life of a roof depends on local weather conditions, building and design, material quality, and adequate maintenance.  Hot climates drastically reduce asphalt shingle life.  Roofs in areas that experience severe weather, such as hail, tornadoes and/or hurricanes may also experience a shorter-than-normal lifespan overall or may incur isolated damage that requires repair in order to ensure the service life of the surrounding roofing materials.
 
ROOFINGYEARS
Aluminum Coating3 to 7
Asphalt Shingles (3-tab)20
Asphalt (architectural)30
BUR (built-up roofing)30
Cellulose Fiber20
Clay/Concrete100+
Coal and Tar30
Copper70+
EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) Rubber15 to 25
Fiber Cement25
Green (vegetation-covered)5 to 40
Metal40 to 80
Modified Bitumen20
Simulated Slate10 to 35
Slate60 to 150
TPO7 to 20
Wood30
 
 
Outside siding materials typically last a lifetime.  Some exterior components may require protection through appropriate paints or sealants, as well as regular maintenance.  Also, while well-maintained and undamaged flashing can last a long time, it is their connections that tend to fail, so seasonal inspection and maintenance are strongly recommended.
 
SIDINGS, FLASHING & ACCESSORIESYEARS
Aluminum Siding25 to 40+
Aluminum Gutters, Downspouts, Soffit and Fascia20 to 40+
Asbestos Shingle100
Brick100+
Cementitious100+
Copper Downspouts100
Copper Gutters50+
Engineered Wood100+
Fiber Cement100+
Galvanized Steel Gutters/Downspouts20
Manufactured Stone100+
Stone100+
Stucco/EIFS50+
Trim25
Vinyl Siding60
Vinyl Gutters and Downspouts25+
Wood/Exterior Shutters20
 
 
Site and landscaping elements have life expectancies that vary dramatically. 
 
SITE & LANDSCAPINGYEARS
American Red Clay100+
Asphalt Driveway15 to 20
Brick and Concrete Patio15 to 25
Clay Paving100+
Concrete Walks40 to 50
Controllers15
Gravel Walks4 to 6
Mulch1 to 2
Polyvinyl Fencing100+
Sprinkler Heads10 to 14
Underground PVC Piping60+
Valves20
Wood Chips1 to 5
Wood Fencing20
 
 
Swimming pools are comprised of many systems and components, all with varying life expectancies.
 
SWIMMING POOLS
YEARS
Concrete Shell25+
Cover7
Diving Board10
Filter and Pump10
Interior Finish10 to 35
Vinyl Liner10
Pool Water Heater8
Waterline Tile15+
 
 
Aluminum windows are expected to last between 15 and 20 years, while wooden windows should last nearly 30 years.
 
WINDOWSYEARS
Aluminum/Aluminum-Clad15 to 20
Double-Pane8 to 20
Skylights10 to 20
Window Glazing10+
Vinyl Windows20 to 40
Wood30+

Note: Life expectancy varies with usage, weather, installation, maintenance and quality of materials.  This list should be used only as a general guideline and not as a guarantee or warranty regarding the performance or life expectancy of any appliance, product, system or component.

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