Every once in a while a customer will ask us why they should purchase our metal snow retention rather than the plastic ones they see. We typically don’t like plastic snow guards for many reasons.
The first reason is because of the type of adhesive used to attach plastic snow guards. Through our testing, we have found that failure exists when freeze-thaw temperature is introduced to the adhesive.
The second reason is they crack and deteriorate when continuously exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet light (UV). See the images below.
The third reason, manufacturers don’t warranty failure when the plastic snow guards pull apart from the adhesive.
Because of this, metal snow guards are best for retention!
TRA Metal Clamp-on vs Plastic Guards
Most plastics eventually become brittle when exposed to the sun.
Because of its tough nature, metal can withstand the sun’s destructive UV rays. Over time plastic will crack and deteriorate when continuously exposed to the sun. If you already have a metal roof, it simply does not make sense to put plastic on it. Metal snow guards will ensure that your metal roof is protected.
Unlike metal, plastic snow guards are usually attached to a roof using caulking, which is likely to fail for the following reasons:
If the roof is dirty or wet when installing this makes the adhesive not adhere properly. When have you ever seen a truly clean roof?
More common than not snow guards are installed at temperatures below 40 degrees.
Caulking cure time can be more than 30 days above 40 degrees.
Over time plastic will crack & deteriorate when continuously exposed to the sun UV.
TRA C21Z Clamp-on with Ice Flags
Unlike plastic, metal lasts.
Plastic snow retention manufacturers generally do not warranty the attachment, just plastic snow guard. If a plastic snow guard fails, the architect or contractor becomes liable for the damage to property /or human life. This should be a big red flag to any property owners.
Next time you are near a roof with plastic snow guards, see if any are missing and let us know!
We recommend only metal snow retention because we know it can properly protect those in and around your home. For extra protection, we engineer from the sheathing up with the fastener and provide a warranty on the entire snow retention system. Before installation, we engineer a specific layout to see that the system is exactly what you need for your specific location and weather. Contact us with any of your project details and we’ll provide you with the best snow defense system that’ll get you ready for winter.