The snow in Alpha can come on fast and strong. Your gutters are vulnerable especially when the snow gets heavy. Preventing snow from accumulating in and around your gutters is important for keeping them in good condition. Snow guards help to prevent the buildup so that your gutters do not experience damage as a result. These guards also help your home in several other ways that you should know about.

What Are Snow Guards?

Snow guards are a type of device that you install on your roof to stop big sheets of ice and snow from sliding off of it. Depending on snow load and roof type, you can choose between pipe-style guards, pad-style guards or fence-style guards.

Pipe-style guards go parallel to the edge of the roof. As the name implies, they are tubular devices. They work by disrupting the flow of snow. These are ideal when aesthetics are a concern. They are particularly visible on metal roofs.

Pad-style guards have single pads that a professional places strategically on your roof. The structure of this pad is designed to break up the mass of snow, provide point loading and control the volume of snow that is dumped at a single time.

Fence-style guards go in rows along the edge of the roof. They prevent snow from sliding and capture it by forming a barrier. If your roof tends to get heavy snow loads and has a high slope, this is a viable option.

These guards work in two ways. The first is that they break up the slide of ice and snow so that it does not come down in large sheets. They also help to ensure even distribution of the snow. Both of these mechanisms prevent issues, such as roof avalanches and ice dams, both of which can be damaging to your downspouts, gutters, roof and landscaping.

Avoiding Ice Dams

Ice dams are something a lot of homeowners in Alpha deal with each winter. They occur when the snow higher on your roof starts to melt as a result of heat getting out of your home. As the melted snow slumps down to the roof edges, it refreezes since it is colder here. A dam develops that stops the water from properly draining. As the ice expands upward, it can creep under overlapping shingles to the sub-roofing and then re-melt. Water damage and leaks can occur due to this issue. Snow guards allow for even snow distribution across your roof so that concentrated ice dams don’t form.

Preventing Gutter Damage

Sliding ice and snow are common causes of gutter and downspout damage. Snow builds up on your roof, and once it starts to melt a bit, it slides down. The volume of snow gains force and momentum as it makes its way down your roof and drops into your gutters. The weight and momentum of this snow load can bend, twist and even rip gutters and downspouts from the roof structure. Snow guards act as a barrier that keeps snow where it falls so that it cannot come down and cause gutter damage. In some cases, gutter guards can also diffuse the direction of melting snow so that heavy icicles don’t pull on and warp the gutters.

Roof Avalanche Prevention

The snowfall in Alpha can get heavy. When these conditions happen, it puts your home at risk for a roof avalanche. This is a situation where a large amount of snow comes off of your roof suddenly. There is a risk of damage to your property and landscaping features when this happens. Guards are especially necessary beneath doorways and expensive outdoor equipment like outdoor HVAC compressors. If there are any people in the area when it occurs, there is also a risk of injury if they get hit by the falling snow.

Maintaining Your Roof Warranty

When you have a professional come out and install a new roof, make sure that you get the details about the associated warranty. Some will require that you use ice retention systems or snow guards to maintain your warranty. Installing these guards will make sure that you are compliant with the requirements of the warranty.

Easy Maintenance and Installation

A professional can install your snow guards with minimal time and effort. Once they are in place, they do not require a lot of maintenance to keep them in good condition. You will not have to worry about having to frequently replace any of the components or make adjustments. When you get your usual roof and gutter inspection, the professional will also inspect your snow guards to let you know if the attachments are secure and they are in good condition. On average, you should get a roof and gutter inspection about once a year.

Preserving Aesthetics

You can find snow guards in a variety of colors and styles to match the aesthetic of your home. A professional can integrate them into your home’s roofline seamlessly so that they work to enhance your home’s appearance instead of detracting from it. You are getting an extra layer of protection against the snow while also enhancing the overall look of your home’s exterior.

Economic Benefits

There is an initial investment with snow guards, but over time, they can provide economic benefits. This is because they help to protect your downspouts, gutters and roof so that there is a smaller risk of needing repairs due to snow. They also help to protect your landscaping and decrease the risk of water damage inside the house.

Choosing the Right Snow Guards

To choose the right type of snow guards, there are a few things to consider. The first is the type of roof that you have. The design of the different types of snow guards are specific to certain roof configurations and materials.

How much snow you tend to get each winter also matters. Consider past weather patterns and the anticipated snow for the upcoming winter to help decide on the best type.

Once you narrow down your options with the above considerations, think of the aesthetics. You want the snow guards to work with the look of your roof. The design of some of the guards help them to blend in seamlessly with your roof color and style. Finally, snow guards can be paired with other snow protection features like heat tape.

If you are unsure about the best system for you, work with a professional. Before making a recommendation, they will typically come out and inspect your roof to decide on the best option for your home. Check out this blog to read more about winterizing you gutters.

Gutter Experts in Alpha

Alpha can see a lot of snow in the winter, so you want to do everything you can to protect your home against it. Snow guards for your gutters are one way to reduce the risk of damage to your gutters and roof. Our team can install these quickly so that you do not have to worry as much during the next big snow. In addition, we can help you with other roofing needs to help to keep your home ready for winter storms.

Contact Warren Thompson & Son Roofing & Siding in Alpha today to get the facts about snow guards for gutters. We also offer roofing repair and installation, siding, new gutters, storm damage assessment and Roof Maxx treatments.

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