Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Today's Purchase

This evening after work, I went to Lowes. Bought my first xmas gift of the season -- a gift card for my brother. Also bought a very small roll of insulation and a multi-pack of slabs of styrofoam. See, my new office has steam heat that can not be turned off and a window that doesn't open*. By the time I left today, it was 76F in my office. (Do we have a university policy that buildings are only heated to 68F? Yes, we do. Administrators can make whatever rules they want, but the steam plant keeps doing its thing like it always does.) I've decided to wrap the heating unit in insulation. There's no forced air, just steam passing through something metal that allows the nearby air to be heated; the warm air rises, pulling more air past the hot components. Seems like insulation is the easiest fix for this problem.

*It's a double-paned plexiglass storm window that has been nailed into the opening where a normal window once went. The only way to open it would be to scrape out all the caulk, cut the nails with a hack saw, and take out the entire window. Seriously considering doing that, trimming down the frame enough to allow it to move, installing some hinges and a hasp so I can padlock the window closed. But not yet. (In industries other than academia do people give serious thought to disassembling the buildings that they work in?)