SnoRail Snow Guard Rail System

The SnoRail snow guard rail system is offered in aluminum or brass, our standing seam roof snow guards are designed to manage snow migration on standing seam metal roofing. Their clean lines, cylindrical shapes and high-tech appearance make these snow guards rail systems the favorite choice of architects and roof designers. Snow retention solutions are important for safety reasons and to maintain the health of your property.  S-5 carries a full selection of metal roof snow guards and snow stops to help you manage this risk. Find a distributor near you to purchase S-5! Snow Guard Rail Systems!

SnoRail Installation

Step 1: Before You Start
First, use a string line across the top of the panel seams at the desired location to establish a true line for installation of the S-5!® clamps. Individually measuring each clamp location from the eave is not recommended. When installing clamps on roof panels which utilize a two-piece panel attachment clip, or on double folded standing seam profiles which use a “fixed clip”, the clamp may be installed at a clip location if desired. In the case of other system profiles utilizing a one-piece clip, the clip locations should be avoided.

Step 2: Preparing the Assembly
Assemble all setscrews to all clamps, and if the system is SnoFence™, thread all SnoPosts™ into clamps. Tighten the SnoPost all the way into the clamp, being sure that the rod hole in the SnoPost is parallel with the rod hole in the clamp. Thread an appropriate number of clamp assemblies onto the SnoRod™. Take care that the orientation of all clamps on the rod is the same. For vertical seams, determine which side of the seam should be engaged by the setscrew. On folded seam profiles, the setscrew should engage the folding contours rather than the smooth side of the seam. On horizontal seams, rotate the clamps so that setscrews can be tightened from the top side of the seam. Use one “E” unit (both clamp and SnoPost) per 48′ of assembly, and at the ends of each assembly to “fix” the SnoRod, preventing lateral movement. Assemble an appropriate number of “E” assemblies (with clamp and post, if applicable). Be sure that “E” units are used on the first and last rods and every 48′. Other than the small setscrew holes provided in “E” units, they are identical to the standard components.

Step 3: Install the Assembly
Position the clamp assembly appropriately on the panel seams, using the string line as a guide and loose-fit all clamps to panel seams. Do not tighten setscrews onto seams at this time, but hand tighten if necessary, just enough to hold the assembly on the roof. Insert the second SnoRod through the SnoPosts and adjust it laterally to the desired location.

Step 4: Tighten All Setscrews
After the second (upper) rod has been fitted through the SnoPosts, the clamp’s screws can be tightened. Using an Allen wrench attachment tip for a 1/4″ drive screwgun, tighten and re-tighten setscrews as the seam material compresses. (These screwgun tips are available from your S-5! product distributor.) On low seam profiles, a 4″ bit extension on the screwgun will facilitate this work.

CAUTION: Holding strength of S-5! clamps is highly dependent upon setscrew tension. Consult your distributor or the S-5! website for screw tension when relying on tested holding strength. Most industrial grade screwguns are rated at 115 inch-pounds tightening torque and will deliver between 115 and 150 inch-pounds (13-17 Nm) at the highest torque setting. These tensions will not harm most panel seam profiles and materials. For critical installations, screw tension should be periodically verified as tested using a torque-indicating wrench.

Building Your SnoRail Snow Retention System

SnoRail System in Aluminum
One SnoRod is inserted through the S-5-ASF or S-5-BSF clamps, positioning it just above the panel seams. The resulting assembly is called SnoRail.

Installation Is Easy
The SnoRail Systems are available with the S-5-BSF brass clamp for use on copper batten or copper standing seam metal roofs, and with the S-5-ASF aluminum clamp for other standing seam roofing materials. The SnoRod and SnoPost are available in brass and stainless.

The extraordinary strength of the SnoRail Snow Retention Systems is in the S-5! clamps. The S-5-ASF and S-5-BSF clamps mechanically attach to the panel seam by inserting and tightening our round-point setscrews to the specified tension. These screws will slightly dimple the seam material, but not puncture it. Our clamps offer durability unequaled by chemical bonds and adhesives that degrade with time and exposure.

Retards migration of snow and ice. SnoClip is an aluminum add-on that helps retard the migration of snow and ice beneath either the ColorGard crossmember, or the SnoRod of a SnoRail or SnoFence system. It has a special integrated rubber “foot” to prevent abrasion of the panel’s finish. SnoClip slides onto the crossmember or rod and extends down to the flat of the roofing panel.

SnoClips are highly advised on seams of 2″ (50 mm) and higher. They are recommended but not mandatory on seam heights of 1-3/4″ and lower (45mm). They retard movement of snow and ice beneath the crossmember. SnoClip is not always an option as some metal roofing panels have minor ribs or striations that will not allow the SnoClip to function properly. SnoClips can be used on a striated panel but the results may vary. SnoClips come in two styles–SnoClip II™ and SnoClip III™. SnoClip II fits seam heights of 1-3/4″ (45mm) and lower. SnoClip III fits seam heights of 1-3/4″ to 3″ vertical seam. When multiple rows of assembly are being used, SnoClips are always placed on the bottom row. Their use on other rows is optional and left to user discretion. Typically only one SnoClip per panel is required but may be used more frequently if desired (two SnoClips are needed on panels that have a seam height of 2-3/4″ or taller).

Using SnoClip™

IMPORTANT NOTICE: SnoClip design has changed. SnoClip must now slide on from the end of the ColorGard® crossmember. Be sure to slide SnoClip onto assembly before attaching crossmember to clamps.

One SnoClip is used between seams (in some cases two SnoClips may be desired). Mount the SnoClip to the back of the crossmember or rod (on SnoFence, only use the lower rod, never use the top rod) using the lock that results with the rubber “foot” resting properly on the panel surface. When applying downward pressure on the part, the “toe” should engage the surface of the panel just before the “heel.”

Which SnoClip is Right for the Job?
SnoClip II has 2 locks and is especially made for seam heights of 1″ (25 mm) and 1-3/4″ (44.5 mm) snap.

SnoClip III has 3 locks and will work on seam heights of 1-3/4″ (44.5 mm) up to 3″ (76 mm) vertical seam. SnoClip may not be suitable for use on 3″ seams with horizontal orientation. Please call for more information.


Caution: SnoClips may not be suitable for use on 3″ seams with horizontal orientation. Please call for more information.

Maintenance: SnoClips may need periodic maintenance. SnoClips may migrate laterally; this does not affect its performance. Some adjustment may be desired (a small dab of silicone can be used inside or alongside the SnoClip lock to prevent this).

Do not use SnoClip spacing greater than 24″. Custom-length SnoClips are available for special situations. Please inquire through a distributor. SnoClips should not be used with brass SnoRail/SnoFence.

Severe roof/eave icing may damage any snow retention system.
Severe Icing: Severe icing and the formation of “ice dams” at roof eaves is neither caused by, nor cured by, snow retention and can be very detrimental to any roof system and any snow retention assembly. Freezing water is capable of cracking solid steel engine blocks, and can wreak havoc with rooftops. If roof is prone to severe icing, it is suggested that self-regulating de-icification cables be installed to assist in preserving the integrity of both the roof material and the snow retention system.