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Sno Gem Engineers Snow Retention System

Sno Gem Engineers Snow Retention System

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Confidence comes from experience and architects have come to trust in the durability and performance of snow retention products from Sno Gem® Inc.
Providing a safe and healthy environment for students is clearly a high-ranking consideration in the construction of an elementary school. Architects for the Alton Hall Elementary School in Galloway, Ohio, recognized the need for snow retention and specified the Sno Barricade® to be attached to the standing seam roof.
“We specified the Sno Barricade because of its proven durability and performance,” said Mike Parkinson, Associate Project Manager at SHP Leading Design of Cincinnati. “We’ve used the Sno Barricade on dozens of projects. I can’t remember the last time it wasn’t on one of our projects.
“The system is designed specifically for each project by Sno Gem. With the design criteria, they run calculations for the project and prescribed a two-rail system around the entire roof to protect the occupants from potential sliding snow and ice.”
With a layout of the standing seam metal roof, considering slope, length of run, panel width, annual snowfall and other factors, Sno Gem calculates the best snow retention solution. “Every metal roofing layout is different and each one requires its own calculations,” said Jim Carpenter, VP of Operations at Sno Gem. “Our calculations are based on results obtained from extensive testing of our clamps. In addition, we always apply a 2-1 safety factor when calculating a snow retention system, essentially meaning each Sno Gem recommendation is always twice as strong as the intended system.”
Employing a 2-to-1 safety factor accounts for unusually strong snow storms, the so-called “one in a hundred year storms.” It’s an inexpensive insurance policy against a rare occurrence.
For the Alton Hall Elementary School, the Sno Barricade was prescribed by Sno Gem. Rush Architectural Metal Erectors Inc. of Washington, Penn., installed 1,850 linear feet of the Sno Barricade around 100 percent of the perimeter of the building. R.A.M.E. also installed the Barricade Plate on Alton Hall. The Barricade Plate is an accessory designed to hold back thinner amounts of ice and snow that could pass beneath the bar. The Barricade Plate is installed on the upslope side of the bar in the middle of the panel. It’s held in place by a tek screw, not visible from the ground. Like the Sno Barricade, the Barricade Plate is available in a color to match any roofing panels.
“Sliding snow and ice is a dangerous problem building owners don’t have to deal with any more because of engineered snow retention systems,” said Albert Rush, owner of R.A.M.E. “The Sno Barricade attaches easily and securely without penetrating the panel, so it doesn’t compromise any roofing warranties. The addition of the Barricade Plate provides peace of mind for the occupants as well as the school district.”
Sno Gem Inc. is recognized worldwide for its advanced, cutting-edge snow retention systems. Founded in 1994, Sno Gem principals have leveraged more than 100 years of combined experience in architectural sheet metal and roofing to develop highly effective and aesthetically pleasing snow guards. Making their debut in the marketplace in 2014, Sno Gem® recently added an array of solar panel and roof accessory attachments to its innovative product line. For additional details, technical questions or to get an estimate, please call 888-SNO-GEMS or visit


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