Snow Retention Options for Composite Roofing

by Lars Walberg

If you’re a roofer and you’re getting ready to install a DaVinci Roofscapes composite roof project, read this before getting started. We’ve got the complete solutions for snow retention options related to DaVinci products that takes into consideration the product, pitch and snow load for your project.

Contractor: Advanced ExteriorsAs a leader in the snow guard industry, Rocky Mountain Snow Guards (RMSG) has designed more snow retention plans for composite roofing products from DaVinci than any other snow guard manufacturer. This gives us a unique viewpoint on helping roofers like yourself focus on pitch and snow loads when selecting snow guard options for a project.

During the past 15 years, DaVinci synthetic shake and slate roofing tiles have been widely used at Colorado ski resorts and communities. Both the composite roofing and the snow retention systems we recommended have held up admirably.

Throughout the years our team at RMSG has designed thousands of snow retention plans. Along the way we’ve learned some critical lessons about holding snow on composite roofing for DaVinci products.

Roof Pitch Doesn’t Really Matter

To the surprise of some roofers, it doesn’t matter what the pitch of a DaVinci roof is, if you live in an area with even occasional snowfall, you still need a snow retention plan.

At RMSG we regularly hear “this is only a 4/12 pitch so I don’t think we need snow retention.” Not true. On a DaVinci roof, even on lower pitches, snow will slide down the roof once the load surpasses the friction on the roof surface. In other words, the snow won’t slide until a fair amount has accumulated, but when this happens, you need snow guards.

Don’t Shortcut the Process

The second thing we hear a great deal at RMSG is “just a row of snow guards at the eaves should be fine, right?” Not necessarily. Every situation and every roof is different.

Steeper pitched roofs, higher snow loads and longer eave-to-peak distances all may require more than a single row of snow guards at the eaves. We don’t recommend that roofers guestimate what’s needed. Instead, supply us with the roof pitch, eave and eave-to-pitch measurements for your DaVinci project. We’ll take that information and provide you with a customized snow retention plan for your project.

Not All Snow Guards Are the Same

rmsg-snow-guards-home-collage-x320Choosing snow guards is a lot like picking out fruit at the supermarket. No two apples, bananas or watermelons are the same.

Snow guards come in different sizes and configurations. They also come in different styles and colors. Plus, there’s a major difference in snow guards and snow fences. It’s critical to use a snow retention system designed for your particular roof and load situation.

At RMSG we have four varieties of snow guards we recommend for using with DaVinci composite roofing. These include our RG10, RG16, ST11 and ST18 styles, which come in either Dark Bronze or Liberty Gray. There are also snow fence options in mill finish aluminum with more than 200 powder coated color options available. These are available for our Drift II, Drift III and No Flash II snow fences.

New or Existing Roof?Contractor: J&K Roofing

Another thing to consider when selecting snow guards is if the DaVinci roof is being installed new or if you’re retrofitting them into an existing roof. There’s definitely a difference in the snow guards we recommend for these different situations.

To help you with your specific snow guard needs related to the pitch and snow load on a roof, RMSG has developed a snow retention guide especially for DaVinci roofs. We outline the unique snow retention recommendations for different DaVinci products, slopes and snow loads. We’re happy to share this with you at or by calling 877-414-7606.

Do yourself a favor. Eliminate jobsite headaches and homeowner concerns by selecting the right snow retention system for your particular situation.