Tag Archives: snow stops


Snow guards are about the last thing on any consumer’s mind, now that the warmth of spring is upon us. Winter’s snow and ice are being forgotten as hats, gloves, and boots are being replaced with windbreakers and sandals. This winter, however, was a big one and should be remembered. If you are a home or building owner, this is the most important time of the year for you to begin thinking about and researching snow retention while it is still fresh in your mind.

Many of our customers assume that we are busiest during the winter months, but that simply is not true. This is due, almost entirely, to the fact that many of our products cannot be installed during the winter. Now that the temperature is beginning to rise, we are heading into the perfect time for installation of our polycarbonate guards with adhesive.  Surebond SB-190 is the industry standard for snow guard installation and the one that we trust for use with our products. Its tensile strength, long life expectancy, and ease of application make it the preferred adhesive here at SnoBlox. Warm temperatures, however, are critical for this adhesive to function properly. Surebond SB-190 requires approximately 28 days at 50 degrees (Fahrenheit) or above in order to achieve a proper cure. While temps below 50 degrees will not harm the adhesive or guards, it will extend the curing time.

Some of our competitors attempt to discredit polycarbonate snow guards with horror stories of failures. The part that they won’t tell you is that these failures are almost always attributed to not obtaining or following a manufacturer’s project-specific spacing layout. Every roof is different and the slightest change in pitch, panel length, or ground snow load can have a major impact on the performance of your system. Not every roof can get away with a single row of guards (regardless of the method of installation). Most projects require multiple staggered rows up the slope of the roof. The main purpose of a high quality snow guard is to hold snow and ice in place, allowing it to melt and then drain into your gutters. This field-style layout allows the weight of the snow and ice to be equally distributed over the entire roof’s surface. Snow guards that are only installed along a roof’s eave are often tasked with playing goalie to heavy, high-momentum snow and ice packs. These fast sliding avalanches will often disengage snow guards from the roof and can also cause them to break. This is considered improper installation and often results in higher costs for repairs than what may have been saved by initially cutting corners.

When planning your snow retention system, the first step should be to visit www.SpacingTool.com. This free and user-friendly site will walk you through creating a proper layout for your project. Simple step-by-step instructions make this process quick and painless. Your project specific layout can be completed in a matter of minutes. An email will be sent directly to you with a shopping list and a pictorial diagram showing the proper spacing for your roof. Once you have finished and selected the snow guard that you will be installing, you can then order directly from www.SnoBlox.com or give us a call at 1-800-766-5291 to speak with one of our friendly sales staff.

Your snow guard order will be processed and shipped out same or next day. Installation instructions are included with every shipment along with a coupon code for any additional products that may be needed to finish the job.


You want to spend your time enjoying this weather and cooking with that expensive grill…not worrying about it getting crushed this winter by sliding snow and ice. Act now and get back to enjoying your spring!

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IceBlox Inc. Wins Metal Roofing Magazine’s 2016 Metal of Honor

Metal Of Honor 2016 Half PageWe are proud to announce that IceBlox, Inc. has been awarded the 2016 Metal of Honor from Metal Roofing Magazine for the 7th consecutive year. We are honored to win this prestigious award for our superior snow guards.  Since our company’s inception, we strive to continue the legacy of innovation and quality that Jack McMullen began over 40 years ago. His son Brion McMullen operates our company today, with that same philosophy and drive.

Since the first ever polycarbonate snow guard, the Snojax 1, came off of the assembly line in 1976, we continue to maintain the same level of quality in our products today. All of our products are proudly “Made in the USA” and while that sometimes doesn’t make us the least expensive, it does make us the best!

Our customer service is second to none. Live support is only a phone call away with skilled technicians who will be happy to help you with all of your questions and concerns. Our customized layout program, SpacingTool.com is also available 24/7.  This user-friendly and revolutionary system allows for one-stop shopping and makes the headache of guesswork a thing of the past. Free use and fast calculation allows our customer to get back to the real work at hand. Same or next-day order processing ensures some of the shortest lead times in the business.

We thank Metal Roofing Magazine and their readers for once again awarding our tireless efforts. Whether you are looking for snow guards, vent pipe protection, bar systems or gutter leaf protection, you can count on IceBlox, Inc. to provide you with the best products on the market and the best customer service in the industry.

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IceBlox Inc. Introduces Standing Seam Vent Pipe Guard Kit

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Sliding snow and ice are major problems for chimneys and roof ventilation pipes on both commercial and residential buildings. Damage, such a bending or shearing, is a common and often expensive occurrence. VentSaver products will help prevent crushed vent pipes by splitting and diverting the snow. Unlike snow guards, this ingenious vent guard product also adds support and strength to your vent pipes, chimneys or masts. The innovative fin design cuts through packed ice and snow, causing the snow slide to divert around the pipe, and to assist in shedding the snow and ice from your roof. Installation is quick and easy. VentSaver is made from quality non-corrosive, powder-coated aluminum, stainless steel and aircraft cable. The 151 series will fit any roof pitch and any standard size vent pipe (1 1/2″, 2″, 3″ and 4″).  The 383 series will fit any roof pitch and an infinite array of sizes between 1-14″. The beauty of the 383 series is the variety of applications it will fit as well as the ease of installation. The HD, like the 383, can work on any roof pitch and also includes the added benefit of the optional wing kit. All 3 of these VentSavers eliminate the need for unattractive, costly crickets and may be installed on any existing roof as well as new construction.

Now our valued customers can install these great products onto their standing seam roofs as well! We are proud to introduce the Standing Seam Vent Pipe Guard Kit as the newest addition to our product line. This is an adjustable-fit mounting plate that secures to a roof’s standing seams with (4) non-penetrating RCT seam clamps. It allows the use of the Ventsaver 151, 383, or HD to be used without penetration. It utilizes a custom fit Ice Ramp, to protect the base of the pipe from sliding snow and ice damage. The fin of the Ventsaver protects the upper portions of the pipe. The all-aluminum SS Ventsaver kit is manufactured in the USA and uses stainless steel set screws and fasteners.

Please check the “Panel Matrix” for a list of standing seam panels that these products are now compatible with. This product works best when combined with one of our snow guard systems. Please visit our website for more information on our snow guards.

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A Thorough Walk-Through Of SpacingTool.com (Part 2)

Welcome to Part 2 of our walk-through of SpacingTool.com. In the last step, we had selected the type of attachment we were going to use for our snow guards. We had chosen the adhesive mounting method, which utilizes Surebond SB-190.

The next step of the SpacingTool process is entering the dimensions of your roof areas. Our test roof is a simple 2-sided gable roof. As such, each side of the roof is considered a single roof area. Inputting the dimensions for only 1 roof area will give you half of the guards that you would need for the entire project. If we had a porch roof on the gabled end of our test building, then we would have 3 roof areas and so forth.

11110369_384616685056797_2108357929576188652_o1At this point, SpacingTool is going to ask you to input the dimensions for your project’s different roof areas. The first dimension it is going to ask for is the roof pitch. If you have the plans for your building, this dimension will often be found on the elevation drawings. If this is not an option, roof pitch can be found manually by measuring your roof’s rise and run. The first step is to place a ruler (or other measuring tool) so that it faces away from your roof panel horizontally. Measure along your ruler 12” out from the panel. Using a 2nd ruler, measure the vertical dimension between the 12” mark of the first ruler and the roof panel. For our test roof, our vertical dimension was 7” from the horizontal ruler down to the roof panel. This dimension will then be expressed as a 7:12 roof pitch.

roof-pitchSpacingTool will now ask what “Roof Shape” you are dealing with. For our test roof, we are using rectangular roof areas, but if we were using a hip roof, then we would need triangular roof areas additionally.

The next dimension that SpacingTool will ask for is the “Panel Run”. This is the diagonal length of the roof area from the peak to the eave edge. This dimension can be determined on smaller roofs by simply measuring along the length of the roof panel. On larger roofs, we recommend the use of an online roof run calculator, such as this one by APB Pole Barns. http://www.pole-barn.info/roof-rafter-calculations.html. This tool will ask you the width of the building and the pitch. Once you enter those dimensions, it will calculate the pitch of the roof for you. Our test building has a 50’wide x100’ long footprint and we already know our roof has a 7:12 pitch, so let’s see what the calculator comes up with.

run calcAccording to the calculator, the roof run for both roof areas is 28’-11 5/16” long. Round up to 29’

The final dimension is the Eave Length. This can be measured easily by following along the bottom edge of the roof areas. Our test building is 100’ long.

dims2Now that we have all of the necessary dimensions, it is time to enter them into SpacingTool. Our test roof is the same on both sides, so we will need to enter our dimensions twice (once for each side) and then click “Save”.


In the next step, you will be asked to input your contact information and some information about the project such as its location and zip code. Stay tuned for Part 3, as we finish our layout calculations for our roof’s snow guard installation.

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A Thorough Walk-Through Of SpacingTool.com (Part 1)


The most frequently asked questions that we get from our customers, about snow guards, are “How do I know which guard to buy?” and “What kind of layout should I use when installing them?” Luckily, for our customers, we have developed a free tool that is proven to take all of the guesswork out of this process.  Let me walk you thru the basics of www.SpacingTool.com.

There is no such thing as a “standard” snow guard layout, every project is unique.  The most effective layout method is to use multiple staggered rows to control the movement and roof loading.  We use several factors to determine the right layout for your project.

Once at the www.SpacingTool.com Home Page, read over the “Installation Instructions” and “Terms of Use/Terms of Sale”. Both of these items are available via the clickable links provided. Once you have read through these documents, click on “Get Started”.

2*For instructional purposes, I will be going through SpacingTool and basing the information on a fictional roof.

Step one is Panel Profile Selection. This step is crucial in ensuring a proper layout for your roof. We will be basing our test roof on the Imperial Rib Metal Panel By American Building Components.  This is a very common panel commonly referred to as a 9” r-panel because the ribs are 9” on center.  We have the option of screw down or glue down attachment.


Most roofing companies will have profile diagrams on their websites that will at least show some of the dimensions associated with the particular panel. With older roof panels of unknown origin, it will be necessary to take a look at your project’s roof panel in person before making your selection. Guessing is not recommended at any point during this process.


Once we have selected the matching panel profile (“R” Panel), the SpacingTool will move us forward to step 2 “Panel Details”. For Our “R” Panel, Spacing Tool will ask for the Valley Width and the Flat Area Width. Luckily, ABC’s website shows the on-center spacing of our test panel as 9”, so we do not need to measure that. We do, however, need to measure the width of the flat area between the two minor ribs of our panel. We have determined that the width is 1.5”. Once we select our appropriate dimensions from the drop down menus, we can move on to step 3


Step 3 is selecting the  “Method of Attachment”. This is the time for you to decide whether or not you will be screwing down your guards or attaching them with adhesive. Depending on the roof panel that you select in Step 1, you may not be given a choice. An example of this would be a standing seam roof. Due to the installation process of this type of panel, screw down installation of snow guards is prohibited and typically voids the roof’s warranty. Because of this, we have programmed SpacingTool to not allow this as a selection in these situations. *Always consult your roof’s warranty before installing any roof accessory.

Our test panel allows us to install our snow guards using either method of attachment. Because we will be installing in the late Spring, I will be using adhesive for this project. Please note that our SureBond SB-190 adhesive requires approximately 28 days at 50 degrees Fahrenheit to cure fully. Once I make my selection, we can move on to the next step.6

Stay tuned for Part 2. Coming Soon.

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Seam Mounted Snow Guard Pitfalls

By Brion P. McMullen, Bio

We are often asked about seam-mounted snow guards and our opinion on their effectiveness.  These are individual pad style guards that mechanically fasten to standing seams with set screws.  They can be made of polycarbonate, aluminum, steel, or cheaper die cast versions as well. While they initially seem like a great option due to simplicity and ease of installation, they have some serious drawbacks.

We have tested and observed these types of devices for decades and will never sell or recommend them.  We have been called upon to replace countless snow guard systems, many of which have been the seam mounted style.  Field testing has proven that these guards are very ineffective at preventing snow and ice from sliding down roofs and can possibly damage the seams if impacted hard enough.

Pic of Seam Mounted Snow Guard Damage

Seams Damaged by Sliding Ice and Snow

Snow and ice settles to the lowest part of the panel called the pan.  The most effective method of holding the snow and ice in place is to mount the snow guards in the center of the pan.  If mounted on the seams, the snow and ice is free to simply slide under the face of the guards and off the roof.  Another common problem occurs when a load is placed on one side or the other of a seam mounted guard.  This forces the base to twist and transfer this load to the actual seam.  This has resulted in bent seams, dislodged guards, and uncontrolled snow slides.

Pic of Gutter Damage With Seam Mounted Snow Guards

Gutter Damage With Seam Mounted Snow Guards

If you are looking for a professionally designed snow retention system…then you should call us at 800.SNOJAX.1.  We will create a free custom layout, drawing, and parts list for your project at www.SpacingTool.com.  All of our products are proudly designed, tested, and Made in the USA.

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Spring is the Time to Install Snow Guards

By Brion P. McMullen, Bio

Spring is upon us and what’s left of the snow is melting fast.  Now is the best time of the year to do a roof inspection to check for damage to the metal panels, gutters, chimney, landscaping, air units, plumbing stacks, etc.  On standing seam roofs, be sure to check the seams closely where the valleys converge.  Clean the gutters and check for loose mounting brackets and leaks.

If you are seeing damage from snow and ice then perhaps it’s time to invest in a quality snow guard system like the SnoBlox Deuce.  This is the perfect time of year to install snow guards with adhesive.  The Surebond SB-190 adhesive we use requires warm weather to cure properly.  Once it fully cures, the strength is incredible and has been field tested since 1996 with incredible success!

SnoBlox Deuce

Start by writing down the following for each roof area on your building:

  1. Roof area overall width (eave length)
  2. Panel run (panel length from peak of roof down to the eave)
  3. Panel type (standing seam, r-panel, etc.  Take pictures and email us if you aren’t sure)
  4. Panel dimensions(width between seams or o.c. width between major and minor ribs.  Take pictures and email us if you aren’t sure.))
  5. Local Ground Snow Load (if you don’t know, call your local building department)
  6. Decide if you want to attach a system with screws, adhesive, or seam clamps.
  7. Determine your roof pitch

The next step is to visit www.SpacingTool.com for a free layout based on your project specific data.  The layout of the snow guards on the roof is the most critical element in the entire system.  A reliable layout will have multiple staggered rows of guards, with each guard mounted in the center of the panel valley where the snow and ice actually moves.  The website will only show you the snow guards that will work properly on your panels based on the information you provide.


Following the layout and installation instructions will eliminate the most common problems and guarantee lifetime performance of your snow guards.

We have spent 35 years perfecting our layouts and were the first to have made the estimating software free to the public at www.SpacingTool.com.  A custom layout will be emailed to you showing the exact recommended placement and parts list needed for your project.

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Snow Guards for Metal Roofing

By Brion P. McMullen, Bio

Snow Guards have evolved over the years, emerging from decades of limited attachment options.  In the last 35 years SnoBlox-Snojax has seen the introduction of new injection molded polycarbonate snow guards, non-penetrating seam clamped bar systems, and adhesives designed to bond plastics to metals with incredible strength.  As metal roofing has become a financially viable option, so has the demand for snow avalanche control products.

Many times, snow guards, sometimes called snow stops, may be an afterthought but most metal roof owners soon realize that they are a very import component in areas that are subject to receive any type of snow fall.  No other metal roofing component provides such great safety benefits at an affordable price.

With so many snow retention options now available, it can become a bit overwhelming to decide which snow guard system is right for a particular project.  We speak with potential new customers every day that have never purchased or installed snow guards and all they really know is that they see buildings locally with one or two rows down by the eave.  Sometimes one row is all that is necessary but depending on the pitch of the roof and length of panel run extra rows may be required for the system to function properly  This is why we developed the first online snow guard estimator for the metal roof industry called Spacing Tool. We invite you to visit the site at  www.spacingtool.com to find out the recommend snow guard placement and to help decide which snow guard product is right for your project.

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