InterNACHI’s Estimated Life Expectancy Chart for Florida Homes
The following chart details the predicted life expectancy of appliances, products, materials, systems and components for homes in the state of Florida. (It may also be applicable to states in the nearby coastal region with similar climate and weather conditions on a typical basis.) While many components and systems in homes located in Florida and the surrounding area have service life expectancies that are comparable to those anywhere else in the U.S., those items that are regularly exposed to the elements, including saltwater, wind, sun and heat, are particularly vulnerable to premature failure compared to items installed in homes located elsewhere. These guidelines attempt to address those differences.
Furthermore, Florida inspectors are subject to state requirements for reporting deficiencies based on expected service life:
468.8323 Home inspection report. Upon completion of each home inspection for compensation, the home inspector shall provide a written report prepared for the client.
(1) The home inspector shall report:
(a) on those systems and components inspected that, in the
professional opinion of the inspector, are significantly deficient or
are near the end of their service lives;
(b) if not self-evident, a reason why the system or component reported
under paragraph (a) is significantly deficient or near the end of its
(For a comparison of service life expectancy in other areas of the U.S., see InterNACHI’s Estimated Life Expectancy Chart for Homes.)
Consumers and inspectors and other professionals advising their clients should note that these life expectancy have been determined through research and testing based on regular recommended maintenance and conditions of normal wear and tear, and not extreme weather (or other) conditions, neglect, over-use or abuse. Therefore, they should be used as guidelines only, and not relied upon as guarantees or warranties.
Surface preparation and paint quality are the most important determinants of a paint’s life expectancy. Ultraviolet (UV) rays can shorten life expectancy, especially in coastal regions that experience a lot of sunshine and heat, as well as wind-driven rain. Additionally, conditions of high humidity indoors or outdoors can affect the lifespan of these components, which is why they should be maintained seasonal
|ADHESIVES, CAULK & PAINTS||YEARS|
|Caulking (interior)||5 to 8|
|Caulking (exterior)||1 to 3|
|Paint (interior)||8 to 12|
|Stains||2 to 6|
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.
|Air Conditioner (portable/window)||5 to 7|
|Disposal (food waste)||12|
|Dryer Vent (plastic)||5|
|Dryer Vent (steel)||20|
|Freezer||10 to 20|
|Gas Oven||10 to 18|
|Hand Dryer||10 to 12|
|Electric Range||13 to 15|
|Gas Range||15 to 17|
|Refrigerator||9 to 13|
|Swamp Cooler||5 to 15|
|Washing Machine||5 to 15|
|Whole-House Vacuum System||20|
Modern kitchens are larger and more elaborate, and together with the family room, modern kitchens now form the “great room.”
|CABINETRY & STORAGE||YEARS|
|Entertainment Center/Home Office||10|
|Modular (stock manufacturing-type)||50|
Walls and ceilings last the full lifespan of the home.
|CEILINGS & WALLS||YEARS|
|Acoustical Tile Ceiling||40+ (older than 25 years may contain asbestos)|
|Wood Paneling||20 to 50|
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.
|Laminate||20 to 30|
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.
|Composite||8 to 15|
|Structural Wood||5 to 20|
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.
|Fire-Rated Steel (exterior)||100+|
|French (interior)||30 to 50|
|Sliding Glass/Patio (exterior)||10 (for roller wheel/track repair/replacement)|
|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.
|Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCIs)||30|
|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|
|Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs)||up to 30|
|Residential Propane Backup Generator||12|
|Solar Panels||20 to 30|
|Solar System Batteries||3 to 12|
|Wind Turbine Generator||20|
Floor and roof trusses and laminated strand lumber are durable household components, and engineered trim may last 30 years.
|Laminated Strand Lumber||100+|
|Laminated Veneer Lumber||80+|
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 for humid and coastal environments to make educated judgments about the materials they inspect.
|FASTENERS, CONNECTORS & STEEL||YEARS|
|Adjustable Steel Columns||50+|
|Fasteners (bright)||25 to 40|
|Fasteners (copper)||50 to 65|
|Fasteners (electro-galvanized)||10 to 30|
|Fasteners (hot-dipped galvanized)||15 to 60|
|Steel Beams||50 to 100+|
|Steel Plates||35 to 75|
Flooring life is dependent on maintenance and the amount of foot traffic the floor endures.
|All Wood Floors||100+|
|Carpet||8 to 10|
|Laminate||15 to 25|
|Other Domestic Wood||100+|
|Tile||75 to 100|
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.
|Baseboard Waterproofing System||30|
|Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs)||80|
|Post and Pier||15 to 45|
|Post and Tensioned Slab on Grade||80+|
|Poured-Concrete Footings and Foundation||80+|
|Slab on Grade (concrete)||75|
|Wood Foundation||5 to 20|
|Permanent Wood Foundation (PWF; treated)||50 to 75|
Framing and structural systems have extended longevities; poured-concrete systems, timber frame houses and structural insulated panels will all last a lifetime.
|Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs)||75+|
The quality and frequency of use will affect the longevity of garage doors and openers.
|Garage Doors||10 to 30|
|Garage Door Openers||10 to 15|
Home technology systems have diverse life expectancies and may have to be upgraded due to evolution in technology.
|Carbon Monoxide Detectors*||5|
|Home Automation System||5 to 50|
|Security System||5 to 20|
|Smoke/Heat Detectors*||less than 10|
|Wireless Home Networks||5 to ?|
* Batteries should be changed at least annually.
Thermostats may last 35 years but they are usually replaced before they fail due to technological improvements.
|Air Conditioner (central)||5 to 12|
|Attic Fan||15 to 25|
|Boiler||40 (if installed)|
|Ceiling Fan||5 to 10|
|Condenser||5 to 7 (for coastal areas, or 15 to 20 inland)|
|Diffusers, Grilles and Registers||25|
|Ducting||60 to 100|
|Electric Radiant Heating||40|
|Evaporator Cooler||15 to 25|
|Furnace||15 to 25 (if installed)|
|Gas Fireplace||15 to 25|
|Handler Coil||1 to 3|
|Heat Exchanger||10 to 15|
|Heat Pump||10 to 15|
|Hot-Water and Steam-Radiant Boilers||40|
|Induction and Fan-Coil Units||10 to 15|
|Chimney Cap (concrete)||50+|
|Chimney Cap (metal)||8 to 10|
|Chimney Cap (mortar)||10+|
|Chimney Flue Tile||20+|
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, housewrap or batts/rolls.
|INSULATION & INFILTRATION BARRIERS||YEARS|
|Black Paper (felt paper)||15 to 30|
Masonry is one of the most enduring household components. Fireplaces, chimneys and brick veneers can last the lifetime of the home.
|MASONRY & CONCRETE||YEARS|
|Insulated Concrete Forms (hybrid block)||75+|
|Concrete Masonry Units (CMUs)||75+|
|Masonry Sealant||2 to 10|
Custom millwork and stair parts will last a lifetime and are typically only upgraded for aesthetic reasons.
|MOLDING, MILLWORK & TRIM||YEARS|
|Attic Stairs (pull-down)||50|
|Pre-Built Stairs (interior)||100+|
|Stair Parts (interior)||100+|
The lifetime of any interior wood product depends heavily on moisture intrusion.
|Oriented Strand Board (OSB)||60|
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 & FAUCETS||YEARS|
|ABS and PVC Waste Pipe||50 to 80|
|Acrylic Kitchen Sink||50|
|Cast-Iron Waste Pipe (above ground)||40|
|Cast-Iron Waste Pipe (below ground)||50 to 60|
|Concrete Waste Pipe||100+|
|Copper Water Lines||70|
|Enameled Steel Kitchen Sink||5 to 10|
|Faucets and Spray Hose||15 to 20|
|Fiberglass Bathtub and Shower||20|
|Gas Lines (black steel)||75|
|Gas Lines (flex)||30|
|Hose Bib||20 to 30|
|Instant (on-demand) Water Heater||10|
|Plastic Water Lines||75|
|Saunas/Steam Room||15 to 20|
|Sewer Grinder Pump||10|
|Showerheads||100+ (if not clogged by mineral/other deposits)|
|Soapstone Kitchen Sink||100+|
|Toilet Tank Components||5|
|Toilets, Bidets and Urinals||100+ (if not cracked)|
|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|
|Whirlpool Tub||20 to 50|
Radon systems have but one moving part: the radon fan.
|Barometric Backdraft Damper/Fresh-Air Intake||20|
|Caulking||5 to 10|
|Radon Fan||5 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.
|Aluminum Coating||2 to 6|
|Asbestos Shakes||30 to 50+|
|Asphalt Shingles (3-tab)||10 to 12|
|Asphalt (architectural)||15 to 20|
|BUR (built-up roofing)||5 to 15|
|Coal and Tar||18|
|EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) Rubber||10 to 15|
|Green (vegetation-covered)||5 to 20|
|Metal||17 to 20|
|Simulated Slate||10 to 25|
|TPO||10 to 12|
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 & ACCESSORIES||YEARS|
|Aluminum Siding||20 to 35|
|Aluminum Gutters, Downspouts, Soffit and Fascia||15 to 35+|
|Galvanized Steel Gutters/Downspouts||15|
|Vinyl Gutters and Downspouts||20+|
Site and landscaping elements have life expectancies that vary dramatically.
|SITE & LANDSCAPING||YEARS|
|American Red Clay||75+|
|Asphalt Driveway||10 to 15|
|Brick and Concrete Patio||8 to18|
|Gravel Walks||4 to 6|
|Mulch||1 to 2|
|Sprinkler Heads||8 to 12|
|Underground PVC Piping||50+|
|Valves||12 to 15|
|Wood Chips||1 to 5|
Swimming pools are comprised of many systems and components, all with varying life expectancies, depending on their exposure to climatic and weather conditions. Also, proper maintenance is key, especially concerning the pool water’s chemical balance.
|Chlorine Generator (salt water)||5|
|Cover||3 to 5|
|Deck Finish (acrylic)||5|
|Diving Board||8 to 10|
|Gas Heater||3 to 5|
|Filter (sand)||5 to 10 (sand must be replaced every 3 years)|
|Filter Grid (DE)||5|
|Heat Pump||5 to 8|
|Interior Finish||10 to 20|
|Motor*||5 to 8|
|Vinyl Liner||8 to 10|
|Pool Lights (fiber optic)||3 to 5|
|Pool Lights (incandescent)||3|
|Pool Lights (LED)||5 to 7|
|Pool Water Heater||5|
|PVC Ball Valve||up to 2|
|Solar Heater||10 to 20|
* Replacement motors tend to last half the lifespan of their original counterparts.
Aluminum windows are expected to last between 15 and 20 years, while wooden windows should last nearly 30 years.
|Aluminum/Aluminum-Clad||10 to 15|
|Double-Pane||5 to 15|
|Skylights||5 to 15|
|Jalousie||30 to 40|
|Vinyl/Fiberglass Windows||10 to 30|
Obviously… a home inspector can not predict how long a building component or appliance will last. Too many variables exist such as the brand and quality of the product, the exposure to elements and how well an item has been taken care of over the years. This chart is provided to educate the home buyers of the life expectancy on building components so that a home buyer can plan ahead and budget accordingly for repairs and or replacement of aging products.
Note: Life expectancy varies with usage, weather, installation, maintenance and quality of materials. This list is provided as a general guideline only and not as a guarantee or warranty regarding the performance or life expectancy of any appliance, product, system or component.