4 Ways to Find the Right Clamp for Your Standing Seam Metal Roof

Posted by David Stahler on Jul 12, 2018 5:03:30 PM
David Stahler

In my eight plus years with S-5! the most common question we are asked is, “Which S-5! clamp do I use on my metal roof?” We will explore the tools available to choose the best clamp along with the various options and other variables to consider, such as what type of roof you are attaching to and what you are attaching to it: solar, snow retention, or some other rooftop utility.


First you need to determine what type of metal roof you have. S-5! Provides various solutions for all metal types and profiles. One of the S-5! clamp products will be suited to your standing seam (concealed fastened) metal roof. So which standing seam roof profile do you have? Let’s take a look at how to make that determination. 

What is a Standing Seam Metal Roof?

Standing seam metal roofs are simply roofs where the joint is standing up in a vertical position out of the plane of the water. These are sometimes referred to as concealed fastened roofs since the fastener that attaches the roof to the structure is hidden. So, if you are a beginner, you will know you have a standing seam roof if when you look at it you cannot see a lot of conspicuous screw fastenings that anchor it to the structure. (Those type of roofs are exposed fastener and will be discussed in another blog.) Concealed Fastened or standing seam roofs come in a multitude of shapes and sizes, from double folded to single folded (90 degree), Bulb-shaped to T-shaped and everything in between. They can be snap together profiles or mechanically seamed.

Double Fold Standing Seam - S-5!®

Double Fold Standing Seam

Single Fold Standing Seam - S-5!®

Single Fold Standing Seam

T Shaped Standing Seam - S-5!®

T Shaped Standing Seam

Bulb Shaped Standing Seam - S-5!®

Bulb Shaped Standing Seam

Trapezoidal Standing Seam - S-5!®

Trapezoidal Standing Seam

Snap Lock Standing Seam - S-5!®

Snap Lock Standing Seam

 Single Fold Standing Seam - S-5!®

 Single Fold Standing Seam 


Let’s examine the 4 ways to determine the best clamp for your standing seam roof:


1. Load Test Tables:

If you know the manufacturer, profile name and material thickness, this is the easiest way to determine which clamp was designed and tested on your specific roof profile. You can simply go to the “load test tables” (create a log-in) and search alphabetically by metal roof manufacturer. You will see the load test results for that profile along with the specific clamp model(s) that we have tested on it. If you have questions we have a technical support line that you can call at 888-825-3432 or email them at


loadtestforstandingseammetalroofs copy


2. Clamp-to-Seam Tool:

If you do not know the roof manufacturer and profile that’s okay because S-5! provides you with our clamp- to-seam tool. If you are not an expert in metal roofing, this tool will help you become one. The Clamp-to-Seam Tool provides thumbnails of the most popular roofing profiles along with their dimensions and the clamps that will fit those profiles.

clamptoseamtool copy



 Sample Illustrations from Our Clamp-to-Seam Tool


3. Take a Photo of the Roof Profile:

Another option to identify your standing seam roof profile is to follow these steps:

  1. With your camera phone take the photo from the eave edge of the roof where the gutter would be located
  2. Include a tape measure in the photo so that we have a scale 
  3. Try to take the photo directly in line with an individual seam to provide the profile
  4. Then also measure the seam spacing and include this information with your photos

See below for the correct way to take a photo. Once you have taken a photo you can share it with S-5! technical support at support@s-5.comOne of our techs will assist with choosing the best clamp and can usually identify the panel profile and often the roof manufacturer as well.






4. Sketch the Roof Out:

The final way you can identify the seam clamp is to sketch out the  roof seam crossection and provide dimensions. See below for photo. Once you have sketched out the profile you can share it with S-5! Technical Support at who will assist with choosing the best clamp and can usually identify the panel profile and often the roof manufacturer as well.

 metalroofseamprofile drawing


Wrapping it All Up:

Understanding which clamp fits your standing seam profile can sometimes feel like a task for some. S-5! has made an easy Clamp-to-Seam Tool to help identify most metal roof profiles and to provide you with the correct clamp for your roof. If the clamp-to-seam tool doesn’t get you the information needed you can sketch your seam profile out, take a photo of the roof profile or go to our load test tables.

Through testing and engineering, S-5!’s unique attachment products have revolutionized the metal roofing industry. We consistently exceed customer expectations by delivering unprecedented value and innovative excellence in the metal construction marketplace.

To learn more about S-5!, on our testing and engineering Contact Us today to speak with our tech support team or to find out where to purchase go to Where to Buy.


Tags: metal roof snow stops, snow retention, Snow stops, Roof Clamps, Snow Guards, plastic snow guards, S5 clamps, metal roof clamps, FAQ