Snow Guards Around the Turn of the 20th Century

I’ve got to hand it to Emri W. Clark of Nashua, New Hampshire. His snow guard invention, patent # 625,144, awarded in 1899, is probably the single most knocked-off pad-style snow guard design that I’ve seen – and for a few very good reasons. First, I can’t help but to speculate that Emri himself must’ve been a slate roofer. He seemed to understand that the material KEEP READING

Snow Guard Designs of the 90’s….1890’s That Is.

In my last blog, we looked into the evolution of snow guards through the history of roofing. This time, we’re taking a giant leap backwards, into the 90’s….The 1890’s! Below is a patent for snow guards that were made in the late 1800’s, a pipe-style system made and sold as Dugan’s Patent Snow-Guards. The date on the original patent is August 7, 1877 and the letterhead KEEP READING

130 Years of Roofing History Drives Snow Guard Evolution

From the industrial revolution of the 1890’s until roughly the mid 1940’s, slate, tile and metal roofing was commonplace among roofing installers and builders. The craftsmen of the era understood the materials, how to work with them, handle them, maintain and repair them and they understood that snow and ice would slide off suddenly (and sometimes frighteningly). During the roughly 50 years of the hard-roofing heyday, KEEP READING

The Pros & Cons of Snow Guards on Solar Panels

Last week, we covered Snow Guards for Solar Panels, and since that post, several questions and comments have come up in regards to the pros and cons of the practice of managing snow and ice on solar panel arrays. I should start by saying that I’ve always been a strong advocate for not using snow retention devices unless they’re needed. If there isn’t a problem, there’s KEEP READING

Snow Guards for Solar Panels

As you’re aware, I’ve retired from the world of solar panel racking. As you may not be aware, Alpine SnowGuards manufactures the only snow retention system for solar arrays. Yes, we make a product that keeps snow and ice from sliding off the roof from solar panels in the form of a sudden avalanche (Take a look at the options!) Why, you ask? Let me tell KEEP READING

PP115 Featured on This Old House!

We would like to thank the producers of This Old House for the much-needed discussion about the importance of snow guards. Last weekend, when our PP115 system was installed on a residential project in Brookline, Massachusetts, Tommy and Kevin of This Old House installed the system quickly and easily. Before I continue, here’s the video (forward to 16:54). It’s my understanding that they’re not able to KEEP READING

Snow Retention System Design Elements

I want to start off by saying that I am really enjoying writing these blogs! What a great opportunity to share acquired knowledge and re-connect with the industry! Thank you for reading, and thank you for your questions. Two weekends ago, my wife and business partner, Sandy and I visited a ranch in Montana where we went horseback riding and fly fishing. What a gorgeous place KEEP READING

How Do Snow Guards Work? (Part 2: Pipe-Style)

Last time, in part one of this two-part blog series, we talked about snow guards and customer expectations, specifically in reference to the installation and use of pad-style snow guards. This time let’s shift the focus to pipe-style snow guards. Pipe-style snow guards act as a barricade system, preventing large chunks of snow and ice from sliding off a roof in the form of a roof KEEP READING

How Do Snow Guards Work? (Part 1: Pad-Style)

How do snow guards work? Believe it or not, this is a highly debated question within the construction and snow retention industries. It’s a common misconception that snow guards are intended to break up snow and ice into little pieces, basically cut up the mass, so that it comes off in smaller pieces. It’s easy to understand how people with limited knowledge of snow retention might KEEP READING