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General Chat Thread, Small office, multiple people, no openable windows... in General; As you can guess from the title, this topic is about 'humanity'. Aka. we all stink and our office stinks. ...
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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Small office, multiple people, no openable windows...

    As you can guess from the title, this topic is about 'humanity'. Aka. we all stink and our office stinks.

    The offices in this school have zero airflow, and as such if any person, no matter how sweet smelling, stays in there for any amount of time with the door closed (which is a bit of a necessity in many areas due to the noise) the offices smell of humans.

    How do other manage this one? We can't leave doors open when we're not in, and we can't open our blinds/windows because every time we do things get nicked.

    Suggestions we've come up with are some desk fans and air fresheners but they're not really going to solve the problem I don't think! Thoughts?

    I don't want the IT office to get a rep for stinking!!

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    JonThompson's Avatar
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    Air conditioning? Why cant you open windows? I know that you said things get nicked, so is your office on the ground floor? Could you ask to be moved to an area where you can open them (Im thinking top floor, maybe an area away from where students hang out)?

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    Danp's Avatar
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    Bars on windows?

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    cut a hole in the door and put a grill there to allow airflow

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    basicchannel's Avatar
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    Sorry to hijack your thread, but on a similar note what do you do if one of you colleagues has a hygiene level that leaves much to be desired?
    We also work in close confines, and as you say it makes things smelly at the best of times, and adding the smelly colleague in to the mix leaves any unfortunate visitors with a slight greeny hue.

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    Thoughts :

    Carbon filter Fan thing - Just a fan blowing through a carbon/charcoal filter. The charcoal will extract odours but they are lifetime limited and you need to shift quite a lot of air for them to be effective - so they will be noisy.

    MHRS - Mechnical Heat Recovery System. It's a system which exchanges air with the outside via an efficient (90%) heat exchanger. All the benefits of having a window open without the heat loss. Can be quite expensive though.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonThompson View Post
    Air conditioning? Why cant you open windows? I know that you said things get nicked, so is your office on the ground floor? Could you ask to be moved to an area where you can open them (Im thinking top floor, maybe an area away from where students hang out)?
    We are going to be moving to an upstairs office, but this new office doesn't have any openable windows at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Danp View Post
    Bars on windows?
    Not possible - not our building.

    Quote Originally Posted by sted View Post
    cut a hole in the door and put a grill there to allow airflow
    Not our building so doing so would be super expensive.

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    I have a small office to myself-- and the windows dont open, i have one small air brick for air- and with all the equipment on, it gets very warm, with just me.

    they are making the contractors come back in and make the windows openable for me.

    Make a case, surely they should do it-- if not make a case that the equipment will suffer if you dont get the air flow- also you all passing out from heat stroke and fumes from when you are fixing stuff will majorly cut into your ability to work............

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    To put things in perspective, cost wise, putting a network cable in is £1000+...

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    Office Plants, they look cool, and they smell nice.

    How about installing yourselfs a toaster and get into teacakes, you cant beat the smell of toasted teacakes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    To put things in perspective, cost wise, putting a network cable in is £1000+...
    I'm not sure that helps - is that a lot or a little compared to the budget for odour control? That you can't mod the building kind of rules out MHRS.

    For the carbon Filters, This is the kind of thing I'm talking about. Not to be mistaken for some of those little desk top fan boxes with a sheet of activated charcoal in the back. You need a big fan to go with them with a CFM rating capable of turning over the entire volume of air in the room once every 5 minutes at a minimum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by basicchannel View Post
    Sorry to hijack your thread, but on a similar note what do you do if one of you colleagues has a hygiene level that leaves much to be desired?
    You tell them they smell and that they need to do something about it.

    Tactfully, of course. If it's a recent development, find out why (divorced and in a bedsit, illness, being force-fed fibre by a newly-vegetarian partner), but if it's long-term make it clear they need to fix it in order to retain continued employment (assuming no valid reason for stinking).

    Or find the most tactless person in the school and assign said stinky person as their sole support until they blurt out that they stink - the shock value of being told they stink normally fixes the issue.

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    Our technician went through a phase of eating raw garlic...... That wasn't pleasant!

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    A working space with no (open) windows sounds like hell to me, especially with summer approaching. Is there no way you can approach your superior and ask them to consider fixing this problem? If not for the comfort of the staff, at least for the equipment. (directed at the point that although you're moving to an officer upstairs, none of the windows open)

    I find it bemusing that there would be any office designated for I.T work with no a/c or at the very least, windows that open. In any case, I hope you find a solution. Maybe buy your co-workers some better deodorant too.

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    Gatt's Avatar
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    Erm... isn't this illegal?? (I'm sure the H&S at Work Act makes a requirement for at least some form of adequate ventilation and natural light)

    Its been a while since I did the H&S Advisor course but Staff Wellbeing is an important one, and I had to do a Risk Assessment on the likes of natural light sources, etc...



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