Building Temperatures: When Does the AC Get Turned On?

As we transition into spring, it’s important to understand that we have a wide variety of heating and cooling systems in our main campus buildings. Typically, the systems aren’t converted over to cooling mode until late April.

How do the cooling & heating systems work?

Many of the main campus buildings utilize heating and cooling systems that are of a “changeover” design, which allows the system to provide for either cooling or heating depending upon the season, but not both at the same time. The “changeover” design is a concern during the “transitional seasons”, as the HVAC Team must manually change the building systems from heating to cooling and vice versa. In some buildings, this process can take a few days. As we have many buildings on the main campus, the full process can take a couple of weeks before all buildings that have cooling systems are changed over.

How do we work to minimize inconvenience?

In the early spring, when we have a rather unpredictable mix of cool and warm days, the HVAC Team closely observes the weather and frequently makes adjustments to maximize the use of our ventilation systems to assist with cooling. For example, if a warm day is predicted, they will set the building ventilation systems to maximize the intake of the cooler night air to help keep the building temperatures reasonable, as much as possible. The variety of building types and occupant comfort systems on the main campus makes this a daunting task to keep up with.

People will often contact us asking if it’s okay to open windows. Yes, if the room has operational windows, they can be opened/closed as you wish. We do ask that all windows are closed prior to leaving a classroom or other workspaces for the day.

The Facilities Service Center is a valuable resource for any questions about maintenance/custodial/grounds issues. If you are uncomfortable, please contact the center at (585) 395-2408. This line is monitored 24/7.

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Kevin Rice:

Posted: March 18, 2022