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Metal Roof Snow Guards

Metal roofing requires snow guards, snow retention systems, or snow rails to control the sudden release of snow and ice during winter. These roofing materials help protect people, prevent injuries and damage to gutters, and end property damage by keeping snowfall on the roofing surface. Snow retention systems are commonly used on roofs in regions with heavy snowfall to improve safety and protect people and property structures from the weight of snow and hazards associated with falling snow and ice. Snow guards are evenly spaced on metal roofs to create friction and hold snow and ice in place until they melt or fall off in a controlled manner to prevent potential damage to gutters. The durable design of a specific type of snow guard material depends on factors such as the roof type, the climate of the region, the snow weight, and the building's aesthetics. Powder coated metal snow guards and snow rails have increased durability to withstand harsh winter elements that roofs can experience.

What are the recommended heights and widths for a snow guard?

An effective pad-style snow guard product should measure at least two and a half inches high and three inches wide. These measurements determine the snow retention system's function, strength, and effectiveness of the holding ability of the snow weight.

What are the factors to consider when choosing a specific type of snow guard?

When choosing snow guard materials, consider using snow guards made of stainless-steel powder coated in the USA to match the American-made roofing colors. Manufacturers of metal and slate roof snow guards do not recommend adhesive installation with their metal snow retention systems. The roof type plays a role in determining which type of snow guard materials to use. Slate roofs usually use a snow guard that hooks into the screws under the slate shingle. Most snow guard attachment methods are compatible if you have a screw-down roof. Screw-down snow guards have screws that fasten through the snow guard into a purlin or structural support below to avoid release in winter. Compatible screws must be attached to at least one and a half inches of substrate. If you have a standing seam metal roof, choose a plastic snow guard that fastens with adhesive or a metal snow rail that clamps to the seam. Keeping snow off metal roofs sometimes necessitates more than just putting snow guards over an entranceway or vent pipe. Not all roofs are alike, and the type of snow guards recommended may differ depending on the roof type and roofing materials used in the project.

What is the preferred method of attaching snow guards to avoid damage and leaks.

The preferred snow guard attachment method to prevent damage and avoid leaks in your house or commercial roofing is to install snow retention systems with adhesive. The preferred snow guard adhesive is SureBond SB-190. Only use adhesive with snow guards constructed of UV-stabilized polycarbonate. Any company that manufactures snow guards should be able to provide a customized spacing layout before purchase. Adhesive snow guards should not be installed in the fall because they need adequate time and temperature to cure properly. Clean debris from the metal roofing panel with rubbing alcohol and let dry before installing an adhesive snow guard.

It's advisable to consult an architect, engineer, or snow guard manufacturer to determine the most durable and effective snow retention solution for your metal roof type. After purchasing snow guards, following the manufacturer's installation directions and recommended spacing layout is crucial. Ensure that the primary business of the manufacturers supplying the snow guards is snow retention; many plastic injection molders now claim to be snow guard experts. It's best to confidently purchase snow guards proudly made in the USA to guarantee the best quality for your house or commercial project.
Snow-covered roof emphasizing the need for snow retention
Snow guard system on the right side of a building, ensuring safety during winter
Minimalistic snow guard design for effective snow retention on roofs

Types of Snow Guards

Metal Roof Snow Guard Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Regarding mounting, we recommend using adhesive for our polycarbonate snow guards. This method is effective and reliable, as the glue etches itself into the plastic, ensuring maximum holding strength.

All plastic snow guards are not created equal. We pride ourselves on using only the highest quality, 100 percent virgin, UV-stabilized polycarbonate manufactured in the USA. While our polycarbonate snow guards may lose clarity over time, they rarely yellow, ensuring their durability and longevity.

Our test results show that metal and polycarbonate have similar test results. Please see our test results page in the resources tab. Many times, the decision is more aesthetic than strength-based for our customers. Installers can adhesively mount only polycarbonate snow guards on standing seam roofs.

Only the SnowBreaker can be used with 3M double-sided tape. Because of its shape, it breaks up the snow and ice rather than holding it in place. Double-sided tape is never a recommended attachment method for snow guards whose intended purpose is to retain snow and ice on the roof surface. We consider 3M tape a temporary solution only for use with the SnowBreaker when weather conditions are unfavorable for the adhesive curing time.

Bar systems are a robust solution for any roofing project. They are the only recommended solution in locations where the ground snow load is more than 45psf. An adequately designed snow retention system will typically consist of multiple rows up the roof's slope, regardless of type. A snow rail system may require fewer rows but sometimes costs more than pad-style snow guards.


  • Lifetime Warranty

    Lifetime Warranty

    All of our snow guard and snow retention products come with a life time warranty. See Warranty Policy.
  •  Made in America

    Made in America

    All of our snow guard and snow retention products are made right here in America.
  • Fast Shipping Times

    Fast Shipping Times

    “In Stock” orders processed Mon–Fri same or next day, except for holidays. See Transit Times.
  •  Continuing Education

    Continuing Education

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