There are a variety of heating and cooling systems in buildings, dormitories, and off campus University residences. Based on your location, the protocols for addressing temperature issues will vary.

Temperature Guidelines

The temperature in many campus buildings is regulated by a central control system in accordance with USC’s energy conservation measures. Central temperature control allows for temperatures to be regulated remotely when buildings are not occupied, while adhering to the following temperature guidelines:

  • All centrally controlled facilities are heated to 68 degrees in the winter and cooled to 76 degrees in the summer when occupied.  Except in research labs, and a few other locations that require specific temperature ranges, temperature adjustment requests for centrally controlled facilities will be considered based on these ranges.
  • Individual personal temperature comfort levels vary. Occupants of campus buildings are asked to participate in University energy conservation initiatives by layering their clothing and reporting excessive heating or cooling to Facilities Management Services.
  • When necessary, a technician will be sent to your room, academic building, or off-campus residence to assess and correct the problem.
To Report a Heating or Cooling Problem
  • For all residential heating and cooling issues - contact USC Housing for service at (213) 740-2546.
  • For all other buildings - all excessive heating and cooling problems should be reported to the FMS Customer Resource Center (CRC) at 213-740-6833.
  • Before reporting a problem, please note the room temperature guidelines above. Please be advised that during periods of unexpected extreme outdoor climate changes, there may be some delay in responding due to high volumes of room temperature requests and calls.
Room Schedules and Central Temperature Control

Classrooms, lecture halls, and other rooms are heated and cooled when they are expected to be in use. Changes in standard room and building operation scheduling should be reported to FMS so heating or cooling adjustments can be made accordingly.

During otherwise unscheduled periods, the air handling systems are permitted to be adjusted only through the approval of Facilities Managers, pre-established individuals in your building.  If you are unable to contact your Facilities Manager, please notify your supervisor or call the FMS Customer Resource Center at (213) 740-6833.

Requests must be made to FMS no later than 48 hours in advance and, for weekend or holiday operation, by 4pm the Wednesday prior to the weekend or holiday.  These requests are to be submitted by email to, or through the FMS Customer Resource Center at (213) 740-6833.

On weekends, holidays, and after normal business hours, FMS provides technical support primarily to address emergencies.  During these times, FMS staff may not be available to adjust equipment that could have been previously scheduled.

Critical Alarm Systems Forms

Facilities Management Services (FMS) is responsible for the operation of base building heating, cooling, ventilation, electrical, and water systems. For reliability, FMS monitors these systems and employs a critical alarm strategy which immediately notifies the necessary FMS personnel when these systems operate outside of their parameters or if they fail. In general, FMS does not notify building occupants or customers of a specific system or equipment issue, but works to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. 

This monitoring and notification system can be offered for use by University Faculty and PI’s to monitor and alarm specific systems which are deemed critical to the research conducted on the University. Examples of systems that have been deemed to be critical are as follows:

  • Critical equipment such as research specimen freezers.
  • Temperature sensitive rooms such as vivarium, laboratories and server rooms, when outside of a given space temperature.
  • Laboratory specific space conditioning equipment such as boilers, chillers and exhaust fans.

To sign-up to receive notification for your critical systems, this form will need to be completed. As a User/Manager of the critical space, you will be notified so that you may initiate mitigation measures. For customer owned and managed equipment (freezers, etc.) it is the PI’s responsibility to resolve the issue, and FMS takes no responsibility for the freezer, or it’s contents. It is essential that contact information for the point person for the alarm remain current with FMS, and any changes are provided to FMS using this form.

If the system and data to be used for sending the alarm is already on the FMS building management system (BMS), FMS will review the request and confirm your request to be on the critical alarm notification. If the system is not already on the FMS BMS, you may install monitoring and communication capabilities which can then interface with the BMS system for critical alarm notification only (FMS will assist in the process and provide communication standards to be used).  

FMS offers two levels of critical alarming services to customers.

Leve1: 1 Building systems for which FMS is responsible and due to critical space conditions customers want to be made aware of systems which are not operating. For example, exhaust fan static pressure is below a set point or space temperatures are below desired operating range. FMS will assign a technician immediately to resolve the issue and the customer is notified of the situation. Once the issue is resolved, the customer is notified. 

Level 2:  Customer owned and operated equipment which is critical. Only the customer on record is notified of the alarm, FMS is not notified.