Shared Equipment

The College of Medicine is pleased to offer a variety of shared equipment space including autoclaves, glass washers, cold rooms, and dark rooms. Most rooms require the user to swipe their iCard to access. Because these rooms are shared spaces it is incumbent upon all users to be good stewards of the space, keeping it clean, removing garbage, ordering supplies as needed and informing the Facility and Space Planning team when there is a problem with the equipment.

Please report all equipment issues to Your email will be read & handled by the COM Facilities & Space Planning Team. If the problem is with an autoclave or glass washer, it is extremely helpful if you can attach a photo to the email of the error message displayed on the screen.

Correct Usage of Autoclaves

All users of autoclaves (including students) must follow correct-use protocols in order to avoid damage to the equipment.

  • Users must remove their items in a timely way or they will lose the privilege of using the autoclave.
  • The message of “water in chamber” is the result of USER ERROR. This is most often caused by someone putting in a liquid load and not returning when the machine alarms to open the door, allowing a 10 minute cool down, then after 10 mins, removing their items.
  • If there is any debris on the screen it needs to be emptied before the run. Not doing this will cause the machine to malfunction. Please use caution, as the screen can be hot, so it must be handled with autoclave gloves.
  • Please report any error messages to
  • If you find that the autoclave begins working again (error message clears itself) after a service call has been placed, please contact, so we can cancel the service call.
  • If/when you notice that the paper roll or the ink cartridge has run out, please contact

End of Cycle Procedure for Liquid Cycles:

  • At the end of the liquid cycle, the autoclave will display a message which reads: “Open door 1 inch and wait 10 minutes.” (This step must be followed to enable the autoclave to go through its cycle completion process).
  • After 10 minutes, user can open the door the door wider and remove the liquids.
  • The above steps are not optional – it must be done in this manner to allow the autoclave to end the cycle properly.
  • Do not hit the “abort” button at the end of the as this will cause the malfunction we have been experiencing with “water in chamber.”

Users: It appears that the water in chamber error message most often occurs when a Liquid load is left in the autoclave. Please remove your items from the autoclave as soon as your run has completed. The paper tape history shows some users are leaving their items in the autoclave for hours and even overnight. This will damage the unit!


The FY22 MXR Imaging PO for the purchasing of chemistry is P2169390. It is prepaid by the College of Medicine. It may or may not get charged back to Departments based upon space occupancy at the end of the fiscal year. Reordering should be done when only two cases of each remain to avoid running out. The phone number for MXR Imaging is: 800-635-9729, option #1 to place an order. Use the ref # at the bottom of each box.

When the chemical mixer is beeping it is time to add new chemistry. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. At sink, wearing gloves & safety glasses (chemistry is corrosive), rinse out bottles 3 times.
  2. With a Sharpie, mark an “X” through the label on the bottles.
  3. Write “Triple rinsed” on bottles (optional).
  4. Throw the bottles in the hallway trash can, not in recycling.
  5. When emptying a case, flatten the cardboard box and place it behind the hallway trash can. Also, do not leave your film trash behind in the room, as the darkrooms are not serviced by Buliding Services.

Remember, it isthe users’responsibility to safely dispose of the used chemistry bottles.


  • DO NOT UNPLUG THE CHEMICAL MIXER. Unplugging the mixer will result in damage to the machine.
  • If the machine is beeping (the sound it makes when it is time to add additional chemistry) do not unplug the machine. Notify a local user of that machine to add the appropriate chemistry to silence the beeping
  • Remember to turn off the machine after each use. Leaving it on overnight causes the chemistry solutions to evaporate and results in damage to the machine.


  • Do not leave the Konica film developer on. The film developer must be turned off after every use.

Cold rooms are complex mechanical systems and they will fail from time to time. They are designed to be used for experiments which must be carried out at 4 degrees, and are not supposed to be utilized as “extra” refrigerator space. It is normal for these cold rooms to warm up to 7 or 8 degrees C about 4 times in every 24-hour period. This happens when the cooling coil goes through a defrost cycle. The temp, however, should come back down to ~4 degrees within about 1/2 hour.

The COMRB is home to 15 cold rooms. These are shared COM resources, however for access, the PI needing the use of the room should contact the PI whose lab the cold room is located within.

Location of boxes:

  • 1082 & 1102
  • 2042 & 2102
  • 3042 & 3102
  • 4042 & 4102
  • 5042 & 5102
  • 6042 & 6102
  • 7042 & 7102
  • 8042

REMEMBER: the cold rooms are complex mechanical systems and are original to the building. COM has standing agreements with Kroeschell for their maintenance & service, but they do occasionally warm up and require repair. As such, if Labs choose to utilize the cold rooms to store temperature-sensitive items in them, it is at your own risk. Please email if you are experiencing any problems with the cold room.