Rockbridge Alum Springs (Rockbridge), Goshen, Virginia, is a campground that’s owned and operated by Young Life, a non-denominational Christian ministry that dedicates its time to bringing adolescents together during the summertime. During the campers’ time at Rockbridge, they spend many hours hanging out and relaxing in the recreational building, The Springs Center Club Room (Springs Center). The Springs Center houses a snack bar, coffee shop, game room and club room. After many seasons in operation, the building’s direct expansion (DX) and boiler system was no longer able to keep the campers comfortable. To solve this problem, Young Life selected CITY MULTI™ Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) from Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating (Mitsubishi Electric) to serve the building.
Bill Warner, sales engineer, APG, and Robert Morck, Comfort Systems USA (Bristol), Inc., Roanoke, Virginia, helped Young Life choose Mitsubishi Electric VRF because of the cost savings and cooling and heating capabilities. Warner said, “There were other systems but none that showed the same energy savings that we’d have with Mitsubishi Electric VRF. They selected VRF primarily for cooling but they also never had much heating for the building, even when the boiler worked. The camp is at high elevation in the mountains and it can get very cold. Since VRF has an inherent controls system, it allows them to schedule the cooling and heating in advance to keep everyone comfortable.”
Warner and Morck also presented Young Life with VRF technology because it would also allow them to salvage the boiler system. “They thought they’d have to replace the entire system but we were able to compromise with them and leave the boiler in place. With VRF, we were able to let the boiler have a few more years of operation and let them use it as a backup heat source,” said Warner.
With quality products from Mitsubishi Electric and reliable support from APG, the renovation ran smoothly. According to Warner, Young Life has appreciated the system’s ability to provide instantaneous, superior comfort. “What I’ve heard from the owners and contractors is how everyone is surprised about the heating capabilities with the heat pump and how it can heat spaces the boiler couldn’t. Even in the winter months, they rely on heating to provide comfort to guests. Now they have a cool and comfortable space with no hot or cold spots.”