Author Topic: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves  (Read 3949 times)

mozar

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Hello,
I'm looking for advice. My roommate is very nice, always pays on time, gone a lot, quiet etc.  But he always leaves his window open when he leaves. When I asked him about it he said he does it because it gets stuffy. Which is true. His room gets direct sun all day and he doesn't have a ceiling fan. There is no A/C in the house.

I have a corner unit on a relatively busy street. It's not immediately obvious that the window is open when you are on the sidewalk. I grew up in a very rough neighborhood so I worry that someone pretending to be a contractor will get a ladder and get into my house. I live in a low crime neighborhood but crime does happen. I don't have items that are expensive themselves but would take me a lot of time, effort, and money to replace all of it.

I'm wondering if I'm being paranoid? Should I get him a ceiling fan?

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2018, 11:03:46 AM »
Wait, so his window is on the second floor?

I really wouldn't worry about it from a safety perspective, it seems *super* unlikely someone would use a ladder to climb into your house? Unless you have a bunch of really expensive stuff in view of open windows as really clear lures. It would be way easier to break in on the ground floor than try to break in with a ladder. Locks are more for our mental well-being and social contract than anything, they don't stop someone determined. Generally, being less of an obvious target and taking away 'crimes of convenience'  by locking ground floor doors will stop the majority of crime.

former player

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2018, 11:14:08 AM »
I worry more about a second floor window if it is both easily seen and obviously climbable - next to a drainpipe, or a flat roof, or some sort of garden structure next to the house wall.  Apart from that, don't leave anything lying around outside that might be used to make the window climbable.   If you are still concerned about physical access, it should be possible to buy and fit some sort of security grill on the inside that can be locked while the window is open and enable a breeze to still get into the room.

Leaving a car in the driveway or a radio playing can be deterrents - burglars go for easy targets and will usually pass by if they think someone is in the house.

Have you experimented with leaving the window closed during the day and the curtains pulled across?  Sometimes that keeps a room cooler than opening a window, by keeping the heat of the sun from getting into the room.  Depending on the circumstances, it might help.

MayDay

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2018, 01:08:37 PM »
In a house with no AC,yes I think you are being unreasonable.

okisok

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2018, 01:48:49 PM »
Get a piece of scrap lumber to use as a sort of doorstop. When I lived in a house and wanted to keep the air flowing, I propped a piece of 2x4 in between the top of the open window frame and the top of the window. (For regular windows that slide up from the bottom.)I made sure the gap was too small for a person to slide through but enough for some airflow. Thick dowels and old textbooks work too--anything that's tough enough to not bend when pressure is applied on the window.

It won't stop a person who would break a window, but it essentially 'locks' the window from going open any farther.

Paul der Krake

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2018, 02:06:44 PM »
Please post a link to the exact Google street view so we can further assess.

mozar

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2018, 02:19:54 PM »
Quote
Wait, so his window is on the second floor?
Yes.

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worry more about a second floor window if it is both easily seen and obviously climbable
It's not easily climbable.

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Get a piece of scrap lumber to use as a sort of doorstop.
That could work, or a grill.

Quote
Please post a link to the exact Google street view so we can further assess.
funny

Morning Glory

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2018, 02:44:00 PM »
I would worry more about rain than break-ins.

elliha

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2018, 03:35:48 PM »
Maybe a chain like the ones one can have on the door might be something that might help both of you feel better? That would of course only be possible if you can drill into the frame. That way a burglar must be very eager and he can still keep the window open a bit. That or offer to install a ceiling fan in his room if the room can hold one.

nick663

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2018, 04:08:45 PM »
2nd floor window in a low crime area without easy access?  You're definitely being paranoid.  About a 100 easier ways to break in than carrying around an extension ladder.

That being said, if you really want peace of mind then there are temporary window locks (made for childproofing) that can be purchased for a few bucks:
https://www.lowes.com/pd/Gatehouse-2-Pack-Aluminum-Sliding-Window-Locks/3410892

lbmustache

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2018, 04:23:29 PM »
I agree that it sounds like not too much of an issue... is this a horizontal sliding window or does it open vertically? If it opens horizontally, you can use a stick or something else to jam the window partway. I have one in my window so it only opens about 6inches, but I am on the ground floor.

Also, I agree that it sounds unreasonable to expect your roommate to suffer inside a stuffy room. Get a ceiling fan or an a/c unit for him.

mozar

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2018, 04:34:16 PM »
Good ideas.
Quote
Also, I agree that it sounds unreasonable to expect your roommate to suffer inside a stuffy room.

This is for when we are not home.

merlin7676

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2018, 10:48:17 AM »
Good ideas.
Quote
Also, I agree that it sounds unreasonable to expect your roommate to suffer inside a stuffy room.

This is for when we are not home.

2nd floor window, low crime, no A/C, window gets a lot of sun, wow. Regardless if you're home or not, it is very unreasonable.
Burglars want in and out fast...and they will target places that are easy to get into/out of. Your place does not sound like that.
In the very[ unlikelyhood that you ever do get broken into (and this should go for everyone regardless), make sure you have home/renters insurance, back up important stuff like photos, and make sure you document all your big ticket items like tvs, computers, ect

Sibley

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2018, 12:17:25 PM »
I'd ask if you were my former roommate, but that conversation happened about 5 years ago. Resolution: I told my roommate that there was absolutely no logical reason for her panic, which means that it was illogical, which means that I didn't want to hear it. I also reamed her for leaving the front door unlocked, repeatedly. That part improved at least. I continued leaving my window open the entire time I lived with her.

(Ex-roommate is a lovely person with an abusive mother who's abuse of choice involves keeping the child as childlike as possible, regardless of what's in the best interest of the child or age of the child. Adult child is unable to see the problem, and likely won't get better until the mother dies.)

mboulder

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2018, 12:54:28 PM »
Have you experimented with leaving the window closed during the day and the curtains pulled across?  Sometimes that keeps a room cooler than opening a window, by keeping the heat of the sun from getting into the room.  Depending on the circumstances, it might help.

This is worth repeating. If the window is getting direct sun all day, and your roommate leaves it open all day, I'd be willing to bet that your roommate is inadvertently heating the house up - it could be doing the exact opposite of what he wants!

When we have hot days I leave the windows open only during the cool evening/night/morning hours. By strategically placing window fans or box fans in various windows, I pull cool nighttime air in a few of the windows and vent the stale warmer air out of others. Then in the morning when it gets as hot outside as it is inside, or when the windows get direct sun, I close all of the windows and pull the shades closed. It keeps the cool air inside, and having the shades pulled slows how quickly it heats up - you don't have hot air coming in an open window, or direct sunlight through the window heating the house up. You can even get shades with a decent R-value to help insulate, keeping the hotter sunlit air away.

I'd guess that my house is a good 5-8 degrees cooler inside on really hot days than before, now that I've started cooling it this way (nights in my area are usually 20 or so degrees cooler than the afternoon high - obviously the fans won't do much if the daytime and nighttime temperature doesn't change much, though closing the shades during the day will still help). But you have to close the windows and draw the shades during the hot day, or you'll lose all of that benefit, and perhaps make it even hotter.

I have a ceiling fan, and I think it is useful for pushing hot air down during the winter, but I think it's pretty worthless for me in the summer (I do reverse the direction of rotation summer vs winter). It gives the illusion of being cool because it moves the air around, but it doesn't cool the air at all. Some people like that but it doesn't work for me. I'd rather have a fan in the window pulling cool evening air in.

letsdoit

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2018, 01:13:46 PM »
I had a roommate that played springsteen so much our neighbors hung up a sign that said 'F you springsteen boy'

Linea_Norway

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2018, 01:14:22 PM »
Indeed, a ceiling fan doesn't cool the room. I always keep windows and curtains closed in day time and ventilate in the evening after the sun is gone.
You could install a silent wall ventilator that can blow in fresh air at night. We have that in our bedroom and it works nicely.

2Birds1Stone

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #17 on: June 25, 2018, 02:09:55 PM »
1) I would not worry about it
2) If I were your roommate, I would definitely leave my window open pretty much year round with no AC.
3) Seriously, don't worry about it
4) Ceiling fans actually give off a lot of heat and then push the warm air around

katsiki

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #18 on: June 25, 2018, 02:14:23 PM »
I had a roommate that played springsteen so much our neighbors hung up a sign that said 'F you springsteen boy'

Not much help to OP but this is funny!

rdaneel0

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #19 on: June 25, 2018, 02:19:27 PM »
As far as roommate complaints go this is pretty benign but I've also lived in a lot of really rough areas so I understand your concern. Why not just spring for a box fan? Stick it in the window then cut a piece of wood for the top part of the window so it can't be jammed open from the outside. That's what I did when I was too broke for a window AC unit. :)

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #20 on: June 25, 2018, 02:42:56 PM »
This is worth repeating. If the window is...

What mboulder said (except I don't have fans per se).

My sister asked why my house isn't stuffy. Because I do this system. All safe windows are open from evening to early morning, letting in the air that's cooler outdoors in. Before the outdoor air is warmer than the indoor (can be 5am or 7am depending on location, orientation, etc), I shut that whole side of the house down like a vault -close windows, blinds, plus blackout curtains (or door, if the room is generally unused, e.g., laundry). The whole place is fresh and feels air conditioned even in very, very hot weather when my neighbours with identical homes can't bear theirs.

While I don't have box fans, etc, I have an air purifier and a bathroom fan that seem to help this system.

If your roommate would be open to shutting it down when he wakes, it can make all the difference.

mozar

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #21 on: June 25, 2018, 08:56:45 PM »
I am able to do all kinds of fancy stuff to keep the home cool when I'm home. I don't think he's up for that though. I recently finished training him to lock the front door when he leaves.

He put his box spring in front of the window that gets the most sun, and keeps the other window open. I do have a reversible box fan I could lend him. He would run it 100% of the time and probably wouldn't ever reverse it. If this were the case do you think it would be better it was pulling air out all the time or pulling air in?

Sibley: I'm pretty sure I'm not your former roommate.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: What to do about roommate who won't close his window when he leaves
« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2018, 12:44:44 AM »
I am able to do all kinds of fancy stuff to keep the home cool when I'm home. I don't think he's up for that though.

Yeah, these kinds of strategies definitely require cooperation throughout the household.

I've never figured out how fans work!