As students return to campus from a long summer break, UWG Housing and Residence Life (HRL) provides little to no reprieve from the heat. The air conditioning units for the residence halls across campus are malfunctioning and forcing students to turn to store bought fans, portable air conditioners and even room changes.
The Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems in Bowdon, The Oaks, and Centerpoint Suites all have several units that provide air conditioning for the entire building. When one unit needs repair, it can affect multiple dorm rooms in the building.
“It’s been more annoying than anything,” said Village resident Taelyn Bates. “It was working fine all year. Then after the 4th of July, I came back and it was extremely hot. In Georgia, in the summer, you need air conditioning.”
In The Village and Arbor View, the microchips inside of the units that read the temperature around the thermostat are malfunctioning causing the rooms to be extremely hot.
“Every time [maintenance] comes to look at it they tell me that these units were built wrong and that the temperature reader should have been placed in our rooms,” said Bates. “That still doesn’t fix my problem of it being hot in my room but freezing in other areas of the house. I had to purchase my own fan from Walmart just to get some sort of airflow.”
Many maintenance request forms are being submitted, there is nothing they can do because of global chip shortages. The hallway sensors wrongly indicate that they have regulated the temperature and stop pushing air through the rooms.
Residents pay on average $3,200 a semester to live on campus residence halls and this is a major issue regarding their comfortability. Students have reported that their maintenance requests go days without hearing a response.
HRL has contacted the manufacturer of the HVAC systems and the manufacturer has sent a team to HRL. Additionally, HRL has purchased over 80 portable AC units so that when systems are down, residents still have working air and are offering room changes to residents who want them.
Students’ frustrations grow as they wonder if they will continue having similar issues through the winter. The University of West Georgia Housing and Residence Life released no further comment at this time.