Jul. 20, 2016

Here in Facilities we've been helping out during move-in for oh, a few years. We've assembled a list of tips and tricks that we hope will make your move-in experience a bit easier. Whether you are a new or returning student, welcome to campus! Our Facilities Customer Service group is here all year and happy to help. Reach out to us by phone, 609-258-8000, or with an online work order. And follow us on Twitter @PUFacilities for outages, impacts and fun Facilities facts.

1. May I have a different mattress?

We will get this question out of the way first, since we get this one a lot. The University provides standard twin extra-long mattresses and only under extraordinary circumstances do we swap out mattresses. We do inspect every mattress before delivering it to your room. If you feel your mattress is unsuitable, please submit a work order and we will come out to assess the condition of the mattress. 

You may bring your own mattress to use on our University provided frame. If you decide to bring your own mattress, please understand you are responsible for arranging mattress storage over the summer. You will find fee-based storage options, as well as other great services, with Princeton’s very helpful Student Agencies.

If you decide (as most do) to stick with our mattress, here are the exact mattress sizes to help with your sheet selection:

  • Standard dorm mattress is a twin extra-long (36” x 80”)
  • For very tall students, we have a limited number of twin XXL (36” x 84”). If you are taller than 6‘ and will need an XXL mattress, please request one in advance by contacting Undergraduate Housing, 609-258-3460.

2. How does the air-conditioning work?

If you have a thermostat in one of the newer dorms, you will have some control over adjusting heating, and if available, cooling temperatures. The settings are based on the outside temperature, so on a very cold day, heating will be available and on a very warm day, cooling will be available. 

Situations when your thermostat adjustments won’t affect the temperature:

  • When the outside temperature is lovely - The heating and cooling systems automatically conserve energy by becoming inactive when it is nice or lovely outside. 
  • When you window is not latched - Here is a little known fact, the window latches are sometimes connected to the heating and cooling systems and will override the temperature settings. Please close AND latch your windows when adjusting the temperature.
  • Our Conservation Initiatives temperature targets guide us to cool to 78f/26c and warm to 68f/20c, even though the thermostats may have a range of 50f/10c to 90f/32c.

3. What can I do if I bring my own furniture?

You are welcome to bring your own dorm furnishings. The important thing to remember is the furniture provided in your room when you arrive MUST be in your room when you leave at the end of the school year. The one exception is the mattress, and Facilities will be happy to remove the provided mattress if you have brought your own. Please review Housing’s furniture policy for more information. 

4. Who cleans my bathroom?

Hmm, it depends. Our janitorial staff clean public restrooms, those with an entrance in a hallway. For private and shared bathrooms, those with entrances inside a dorm room, the residents who access the bathroom will need to clean it. We suggest working out a cleaning schedule with your roommates. Upon request, Facilities may be able to provide cleaning and restroom supplies for shared bathrooms. The best way to contact us, anytime during the day or night, is to submit an online work order.

5. I would be great to have bike hooks installed in my room

We absolutely agree! This may be the best keep Facilities secret (and we hope you will help spread the word so it is not such a secret anymore). Submit an online work order, or phone the Facilities Customer Service Center, 609-258-8000, to request a bike hook installation. Requests will be collected throughout move-in, and installations will begin in October.

If you are lucky enough to move into a room with a wooden bar and pre-drilled holes on the ceiling, you can come and pick up the hooks from our Service Center in the MacMillan lobby. Please note, you must already have the pre-drilled wooden bar on your ceiling to attach the hooks yourself.

6. I would like to bunk/un-bunk my bed

Facilities Service Center can provide the essential supplies to bunk your beds, at no charge. We will provide you with four metal posts (bunking pegs) to secure the beds in place, and deliver a rail and a ladder to your room. Unfortunately, Facilities cannot assist with actually moving your beds or furniture, yet what a great opportunity for you to meet your hall mates!

Another option is to loft your bed, and Princeton Student Agencies has loft bed kits for rent. Once their inventory is gone, the waitlist starts.

7. How do I raise/lower the height of my bed?

Increase your storage by raising your bed, great idea! Or, if you receive a bed that is too high for your liking, you can lower it. Our bed frames are designed so you can choose and adjust between two different height options. Our short video provides step-by-step instructions on How to Adjust Your Bed height. When you are ready, grab a friend to help; it is much easier with two people. 

8. I accidentally locked my interior bedroom door. Can someone open it for me?

Absolutely, call our service center, 609-258-8000, and we will be happy to help. If needed, we can send a locksmith to you. 

9. There is No power in the kitchen/bathroom outlets

reset button is in the middle of an GCFI outlet
Kitchens and bathrooms have special outlets called GFCI’s (ground-fault circuit interrupter), which are required and provide extra protection in areas around water.  If there is no power in the outlet (or even to non-GFCI outlets nearby), press the reset button. If the circuit was interrupted, as designed, pressing the reset button will ‘restart’ the flow of power to the outlet again. If the reset button does not restore power in the outlet, please call our Service Center, 609-258-8000.

10. The outlet on the wall isn’t working

In living rooms and bedrooms with no ceiling lights, the light switch often controls a wall outlet to enable you to turn a lamp on when entering the room. 

wall outlet controlled by lightswitch

Each room is different, so it may take a few tries of plugging in a lamp to find the correct outlet-light switch pairing. If there is no power to an outlet, first turn flipping the switch to see if that is the issue. Once you find the correct outlet controlled by the light switch, plug in your lamp and you no longer have to walk through darkness to turn on a light!