Unistrut Service Company


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ColorGard is the only snow retention system good enough to be warranted for the life of the roof. Unlike other snow guards that yellow and fail over time, ColorGard’s unsurpassed holding strength controls snow migration with a perfect color-match that lasts the life of the roof.



ColorGard—for a perfect color—match that lasts the life of the roof! None of our competitors dare to stand behind the performance of their own products this way.

The sudden and unexpected release of snow from the roof can be dramatic, posing a serious threat to property and passers-by. ColorGard dramatically reduces the risks associated with rooftop avalanches and maintains the clean colorful appearance of the roof with perfect color and finish matching, which lasts as long as the roof itself! ColorGard is the only snow retention system designed and engineered on a site-specific basis; guaranteed to perform, to not damage the roof or finish, and to exactly match the roof color—for the entire life of the roof.

Today’s premium Kynar 500® and Hylar 5000® (PVDF) paint systems used on metal panels are “coil-coated” and oven-cured. This is the only finish application method that can be warranted against color fade for 30 years or longer. Nothing can equal it! So, why settle for less in a snow guard system? While some dyes, powder-coats and air-dried color application methods may initially simulate a perfect match, the color soon begins to fade and becomes increasingly mismatched with a few years of age. By utilizing a strip of the actual roof material, ColorGard perfectly matches the roof—forever!

ColorGard is mechanically attached with S-5!® clamps. S-5! is the trusted name in metal rooftop attachment technology worldwide. S-5!’s , round-point setscrews grip the seam securely without penetration and without damage to the panel’s protective finishes. The clamps are precision-machined from aircraft quality, high tensile aluminum—not cast or plastic. All related hardware is non-ferrous stainless steel for lasting performance. 


Conditions that cause it and how to reduce it: Moist snow may undergo compression buckling where it is stopped by the snow retention device. This can cause the blanket to fold up and over the rail where pieces of it then break away.

When the blanket of snow on the roof is dense and wet (not solidified), it may tend to undergo compression buckling, pushing a “loop” upward from the roof surface as the heavy mass compresses toward the eave where restrained by snow guards. This loop, can fold over the blanket and the snow retention device(s) in the downslope direction, often breaking and in many cases falls from the roof.

Compression buckling tends to happen more when blankets are thin. When the thickness of the blanket increases, it gains compressive strength. This tendency is related to both the vector force (and mass) and the compressive strength of the snow. Hence the following variables are at play:

Slope: Buckling is more common with steeper slopes as vector forces increase

Thickness of snow blanket: Thicker blankets generally have greater compressive strength and lower mass, and are therefore less likely to buckle

Moisture: Greater moisture content increases mass, which in turn increases the likelihood of buckling

Temperature: Warmer temperatures decrease compressive strength, and this increases the probability of buckling

Length of snow blanket: Longer blankets have an increased vector and a correspondingly increased probability of buckling

Contrary to popular myths, the height of the snow retention device plays no role in the probability of a snow blanket to buckle, and heavier accumulations decrease probability, not increase it.

Surprisingly, a thin blanket of snow poses a greater risk of buckling than do thicker blankets.

Commentary – Solution

This is analogous to compression buckling of a steel column, except that the properties of the snow are less predictable. The problem is noted when the snow blanket is minimal in thickness and very wet (lacking in body and compressive strength). Two things decrease the likelihood of the snow buckling:

  1. reducing the unsupported length of the column (snow blanket) by adding rows of snow retention
  2. increasing the sectional size of the column (snow blanket), i.e., increasing the snow depth, which is impossible to control. When the snow blanket increases in depth, it is less likely to buckle.

Our experience has shown us that the most effective approach for adding rows of snow retention is to add a second row some 8-10’ more or less above the first. If the blanket buckles above the upper row, the “loop” is usually still contained above the lower row.


Why does S-5!  offer a Limited Lifetime Warranty?
The only snow retention system good enough to be warranted for the life of the roof. Virtually every snow retention company boasts about product superiority. It is increasingly difficult to distinguish fact from confusing sales hype and empty claims. But only ColorGard from S-5! offers a structural performance warranty for the life of the roof. That’s not an empty claim, puffy boast or wishy-washy sales rhetoric—it’s total, written assurance of system performance that no other manufacturer can match.

For over two decades, the ColorGard system has delivered proven performance in extensive independent laboratory testing and installations around the world. Using S-5! clamping technology and 100% non-corrosive metals (never plastic), ColorGard systems are custom engineered to meet the specific needs of each project.

Don’t let the rhetoric of competitors deceive you. S-5! has put their money where their mouth is by introducing this industry first: They offer a lifetime warranty because we know that only the ColorGard system measures up to the task—not just for a few years, but for the life of the roof!

The ColorGard System Limited Lifetime Warranty provides:
The S-5! clamps will not pull off the seam, break or otherwise cause the system to release

The ColorGard crossmember and its anchorage will not buckle, break or otherwise fail under load

The ColorGard System will not corrode or cause corrosion of the roof

The ColorGard Snow Retention System will not damage the roof

The ColorGard System will color-match the roof for the life of the roof

The ColorGard System will perform for the life of the roof! All warranted projects are subject to inspection and review by the manufacturer, and the warranty does not cover circumstances over which we have no control, such as deficiency of the building structure or components that have been abused.

To learn how to obtain your ColorGard System Limited Lifetime Warranty, contact S-5! for program details.

Use Our Snow Retention System Calculator!

Need help selecting the S-5!® Components required to complete your ColorGard snow retention system?Try the S-5!® online snow retention system calculator to ensure you have everything needed in order to complete your system.


View S-5! Clamps commonly used with the ColorGard system. 

Components commonly included with the ColorGard system: 

ColorGard® Unpunched

SnoClip II

Snoclip III



S-5! ColorGard CAD PDF

Metal Roof Design for Cold Climate

Snow Buckling Information

ColorGard Brochure