Ask the Experts: Snow Guards
If you install polymer roofing in a snowy region, you need to know Lars Walberg. As the president of Rocky Mountain Snow Guards, Inc., Lars and his son Clay are experts at snow retention systems. At DaVinci Roofscapes, we work closely with Lars and thought you’d benefit from learning more about his company and experiences.
Q: What sets your company apart in the marketplace?
A: We’re one of only four manufacturers in the United States that design and sell complete snow retention systems for any type of roofing system, whether on a residence or commercial project. We sold more than 900 systems last year. And, we offer a 50-year warranty on our systems when installed in accordance with our designs.
Q: Your site shows a wide variety of snow retention systems. How does a roofer know which one is best to use on their roofing project?
A: The best thing to do is go to our website, www.rockymountainsnowguards.com. That’s where a contractor can go to SEARCH BY ROOF TYPE to find the appropriate snow guard and retention system for their project. There’s also an online request form there or roofers can call us at 877-414-7606.
Q: Let’s talk specifically about synthetic roofing materials. What advice do you have for roofers installing or retrofitting composite slate or synthetic shake roofs?
A: First of all, roofers need to understand that all polymer roof tiles are slippery and won’t hold snow, regardless of the pitch. Snow will definitely slide off composite roofing, even if you have a low 4/12 pitch. In fact, show will accumulate more on a lower pitch than on a higher pitch before it slides, which can cause greater potential for damage.
Q: So, what should a roofer do?
A: Make sure snow guards are properly specified and installed — and don’t skimp on them. We run into situations where contractors buy a box of 50 or 100 snow guards for a 40 or 50 square roof. One or two snow guards per 100 square feet of roofing area just won’t do the job. The polymer designer roof needs a “system” to reduce the potential for a “catastrophic release” where all the snow comes down in an avalanche and has the potential to harm people and property.
Q: Finally, what’s the most popular snow retention type product for DaVinci imitation slate shingles and simulated shake roofing?
A: The SnowTrapper line is the most popular of our products for DaVinci luxury roofs. We have different models that work for each DaVinci product for both new and retrofit applications and we’re happy to work directly with roofers on their product selections.