Electrical Equipment in Campus Buildings

Reason for Policy

To meet the needs of campus users in a safe and reliable manner FO&M must be made aware of user needs.

Affected Parties

All Groups

Policy Statement

The installation of electrical equipment in Dartmouth College buildings impacts existing electrical systems and the reliability and safety of the facility. In order to provide guidance to the Campus community when considering installing new electrical equipment on campus, the following applies:

  • This policy applies to the installation of electrical equipment other than standard office equipment, such as research or lab related equipment, and process equipment, with electrical load of 500 W or greater.  This includes 3-D printers and laser cutters, which must be reviewed before installation.  It does not apply to standard office equipment or appliances such as desktop or laptop computers, non-3D printer/scanner equipment, microwaves, coffee makers, desk fans, and other small equipment with electrical loads that are typically under 500W.
  • When installation of above equipment is being planned by facility users (faculty, staff, departments, etc.), equipment and installation information shall be provided to the appropriate party (see Contacts below) for review with at least one month notice before equipment purchase and installation.  The purpose of the review is to determine compatibility with the existing electrical system, and whether any modifications will be needed to support the proposed equipment.  Information to be provided should include equipment specifications or nameplate data describing the electrical power requirements, and a sketch of the floorplan showing proposed location of the equipment.  
  • Note that new equipment intended to be plugged into existing general use receptacles shall be rated 120 VAC, maximum 500W/600VA, and located such that the cord will reach the existing receptacle without use of an extension cord. If the equipment has a higher load, or if there are multiple equipment items planned to be added in the same area/room that have a combined load higher than 500 W, FO&M shall review the equipment and the existing power (receptacles/circuits) to verify that the circuits will not be loaded beyond capacity.  This review typically takes 1- 2 weeks, depending upon the complexity of the request. 
  • Equipment shall also be reviewed for potential environmental impact and special ventilation requirements where applicable (for example, 3-D printers and laser cutters).  FO&M will coordinate with EH&S as appropriate.
  • For critical equipment that cannot lose power, users may request back-up/stand-by power, and/or monitoring systems/alarms, and FO&M shall endeavor to supply where feasible. 
  • Sensitive equipment may require protection from power sags and swells and may not be able to withstand unplanned power outages, including power interruptions during the transfer to standby generator power.  Power protection equipment (such as power conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies, surge protection devices) and the maintenance of such equipment shall be the responsibility of the user (faculty, staff, department, etc.) to fund and manage.  Note that plug in surge protectors/ power strips are not an acceptable way to mitigate those costs and risks.  
  • FO&M Engineering, working with Project Management Services where appropriate, can offer technical support, cost estimates, power protection equipment selections, electrical system analysis, design, contractor bids, installation management, and maintenance management for electrical equipment installation projects.
  • The cost of new electrical system installations and/or modifications (branch circuits, receptacles, disconnects, over-current devices, backup/ stand-by power supply, monitoring systems/alarms, etc.) that are required for new equipment, including engineering review and design (if applicable) shall be borne by the user (faculty, staff, department, etc.).

Privately owned Greek letter organizations and Society houses develop their own policies regarding electrical equipment installations and UPS installations. 

Exclusions & Exceptions

Exceptions to this policy may be made pending the review and approval of the Associate Vice President of Facilities, Operations, and Management. 


Individuals who proceed with installations of electrical equipment without FO&M technical review may be liable for any ramifications due to the installation. 



Submit request for review of Electrical Equipment, including information listed in second bullet above to:

Tuck  School Facilities: email to: tuck.events.and.facilities@tuck.dartmouth.edu
Thayer School Facilities:  email to: Thayer.Facilities@dartmouth.edu
Geisel School Facilities: email to: Geisel.Facilities@dartmouth.edu

All other Facilities: https://facilities.dartmouth.edu/home/BP/WebClient  
Submit as an "Electrical Services" request. 

Policy ID


Effective Date

February 1, 2023

Last Revised Date

February 1, 2023


Campus Services

Office of Primary Responsibility

Facilities Operations & Management (FO&M)

Last Reviewed Date

February 1, 2023

Next Review Date