Jan. 6, 2021

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 (check out tips 8 and 9 to help adjust your bed). Whether you are a new or returning student, welcome to campus! Our Facilities Customer Service team is here all year and happy to help. Reach out to us by phone, 609-258-8000, or with an online work order. We also encourage you to visit construction.princeton.edu to find current construction impacts on campus.

Due to COVID safety protocols, we will still respond to emergencies and urgent issues, however, non-urgent issues will be deferred until after COVID safety protocols are lifted. The tips below have been adjusted to reflect current COVID safety protocols. 

1. What if I notice something broken or leaking in my room, or around campus?

Contact us as soon as you notice something is broken, and especially if you notice water from a leak or an unknown source. Really, that is literally why we are here. We have a large campus and your calls help us maintain our buildings and keep our campus safe. 

The fastest way to reach us is by giving us a quick phone call, 609-258-8000.
You can submit a basic work order any time of day using our quick online form.
You can email us, service@princeton.edu, yet please understand this is actually the slowest way to reach us.

2. What if I notice bugs in my room or building?

Contact us if you notice more than a few bugs in your room or building, we like to address this issue quickly. 

The fastest way to reach us is by giving us a quick phone call, 609-258-8000.
You can submit a basic work order any time of day using our quick online form.
You can email us, service@princeton.edu, yet please understand this is actually the slowest way to reach us.

3. May I have a different mattress?

We do get this question a lot, so you are not alone. 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 basic work order and we will come out to assess the condition of the mattress after the January 2021 quarantine period. If you decide to bring your own mattress, Facilities will be happy to remove the provided mattress, after the January 2021 quarantine period.

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

  • A standard dorm mattress is twin XL (36” x 80” x 7")
  • A limited number of twin XXL mattresses (36” x 84” x 7") are available for very tall students. If you are taller than 6‘ and need an XXL mattress, please request one in advance by contacting Undergraduate Housing, 609-258-3460.

4. How does climate-control work in my room?

If you are in one of the newer dorms with a thermostat, you may have some control over adjusting heating, and if available, cooling. 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 in your room:

  • 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 your 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 display a range of 50f/10c to 90f/32c.

5. 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. Facilities will be happy to remove the provided mattress, after quarantine, if you have brought your own. Please review Housing’s furniture policy for more information. 

6. Who cleans my bathroom?

Hmm, it depends. Our staff clean public restrooms with a hallway entrance. For private and shared bathrooms, i.e. 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. Contact us by submitting a basic work order.

7. It would be great to have bike hooks installed in my room

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

8. 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 deliver four metal bunking pegs to secure the beds in place, a rail, and a ladder to your room (check out the video in tip #9). Unfortunately, Facilities cannot assist with actually moving your beds or furniture. if you need assistance with this, once COVID safety protocols are lifted you could grab a mask and gloves and ask a dorm friend to assist. 

If you want to un-bunk a bed, remove the top mattress first for easier lifting, then lift off the top bed frame and remove the four metal posts that had secured the top bed. 

9. 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 a regular height (approximately 11" above the floor using the lower slats) and a raised height (approximately 22" above the floor using the top slats in the frame). 

This short video provides step-by-step instructions on how to adjust your bed height. When you are ready we suggest you grab a friend to help, this task is much easier with two people. 

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

Absolutely, call Facilities Service Center, 609-258-8000, and we will be happy to help. If needed, we can send a locksmith to you. 

11. 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.

12. 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 try 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.