How to Make Your Own Snow Guards How to Make Your Own Snow Guards

What You'll Need
50-year silicone caulk
Neoprene-washed screws, four to six per guard
Power drill
Old drain gutters
Saw
Board material: old skis, strong plastic or wood boards (roughly 4 inches wide, best if 1/2 -inch tall or less)

Installing snow guards is very beneficial if you live in an area with frequent snow fall. These provide a cost-effective way of protecting against heavy amounts of snow falling from the roof at one time, especially over an entrance. They are not very expensive (anywhere from $1.50 each) and each type of roof necessitates a different type of guard, but you can try the method below for building your own basic snow guards if you have the materials handy. The stronger your materials, the safer your guards will be.

It is best to do this during warm weather to prevent slipping and so that the materials are steadily in place before snowfall.

Step 1 – Cutting the Materials

Cut the drain gutter so that each piece is roughly 4 inches long. Next cut your board material so they are about 5 inches long. You should have one piece of gutter per board.

Step 2 – Attaching the Pieces

Place one piece of gutter at the end of one board, open end facing the long end of the board. Use the silicone caulk to attach the gutter piece to the board. Do this for each piece, then let sit for 24 hours. It will likely take longer in colder weather.

Step 3 – Installing the Guards on the Roof

Place the guard in a staggered formation, so that every other guard is 6 inches higher up on the roof. You will end up with two rows of guards. Use the silicone caulk make a ring on the bottom perimeter of the board, then put in place on the roof. Then, to reinforce it, use the power drill to screw each board onto an asphalt or wood roof. For shingle roofs, use a thinner board, and slide it under the shingle after you have loaded it with caulk.

For Greater Strength

If the gutter pieces you have are not strong enough, you can reinforce them by putting small metal bars inside them, reaching from the board to the top of the gutter piece, at the front two corners of the gutter piece. Additionally, you may choose to double layer your gutter pieces, using one gutter piece snug up against the other and screwing them both into the board piece.

Final Thoughts

Depending on what material your roof is made of, this method might not work for you. If your area experiences heavier snowfall, you might consider using something sturdier than gutter pieces, such as additional cuts of wood, metal, or hard plastic. The most important factor is that the guard is securely attached to the roof so it does not fall of and provide more risk to injury than the snow itself would. If in doubt, ask a professional.

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