Denver Roofing: Article About The Necessity Of Snow Guards
Most homeowners have never heard of snow guards. This is mostly due to the fact that modern roofing materials don't require a snow guard system, but they are a necessity on historic homes with slate or clay tile roofs. Homeowners who are lucky enough to have one of these historic systems on their home should become familiar with snow guards and find Denver roofing professionals who are too.
Snow guards date back to the late 1800s when they started to appear on slate roofs in New England. Wood and metal diverters were used before snow guards were invented, but these diverters were quite bad at keeping the snow from sliding off the roof, making heavy snowfall quite dangerous to the residents of the home. In historic homes, these snow guards varied in type. Snow bars were made of staggered metal bars affixed to the roof. Snow hooks were made with heavy gauge wire that was nailed to the roof deck between the tiles. Snow guards were made with heavy metals and came in a variety of designs with more ornamental guards being reserved for higher end historic homes.
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Snow guards are designed to prevent mass amounts of snow and ice from falling off roofs in one dangerous load. Certain types of shingles like metal, clay or slate can't hold snow on the roof like asphalt shingles do. While snow should fall off a roof to prevent damaging the roof with its weight, it should come off slowly. On many historic roofs without snow guards, the snow slides right off in a single load. As the snow starts to melt, it creeps towards the edge of the roof in one sheet before coming off at once. This can damage property or hurt anyone who happens to be standing below. These guards also keep snow from knocking the gutters off and prevent damage to lower roofs on multi story homes. Snow guards will allow the ice to melt slowly and come off in small, safe amounts.
In their various forms, snow guards are a necessity on newer homes as well. If the shingles aren't able to successfully grip the snow and allow it to slowly melt, there needs to be a system in place to prevent large amounts of snow from dropping off the roof all at once. These snow guard systems not only protect the people living in the home; they also protect the home's property.