VariFlame, a new variable rate heater offering many exclusive features for controlling pork production environments, will be launched by AP (Automated Production Systems) at the 2016 World Pork Expo June 8-10 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines.

VariFlame is the industry’s first modulating heater that can work with any control system in the world. It seamlessly synchronizes and adjusts with the temperature curves set in the controller to maintain desired room temperature.

Brian Rieck, AP product manager, said VariFlame connected to AP’s EDGE controller also provides remote access, giving producers control of their heaters and many other inputs from a single system. “Producers can access diagnostics and adjust barn settings remotely from any web-enabled device,” he said.

Other unique features of VariFlame connected to EDGE include:

  • LED temperature probes, which provide flexibility to not only operate the heater, but also control curtains, fans and other equipment.
  • Stir-fan mode, which allows producers to continue circulating air through the heater without turning on the burner as the animals grow and the heater is no longer needed. “This additional circulation of air is ideal for maintaining optimal and uniform environmental conditions,” Rieck said. “It also provides an alternative use for the heater so it’s not sitting idle during the warm months.”
  • Exercise mode, which allows EDGE to automatically turn on the heater at scheduled times to ensure it fires up correctly and remains in good working order.

Other features available on all VariFlame models support improved performance, durability and ease of use. For example, Rieck noted that most variable rate heaters range from 65,000to 250,000 BTUs. “VariFlame has an extended range, from 55,000 to 250,000 BTUs, which not only allows the heater to run longer, but also provides improved heat distribution and humidity control,” he said. “Even while operating at lower BTUs, the burner maintains consistent ignition reliability and flame stability.”

He added that VariFlame is the industry’s first all-stainless steel heater, making it the most durable and corrosion-resistant heater on the market. “In addition, the igniters are made of silicon nitride, a material typically used in performance engine parts, enabling them to reach hotter surface temperatures and last longer,” Rieck said. “A more durable igniter means less time and money spent frequently replacing silicon carbide versions.”

Easier maintenance is another benefit. VariFlame is first heater on the market featuring a single, easy-to-remove door that allows producers to easily access all serviceable parts from a single location. In addition, every aspect of the heater can be serviced using a single tool – a ¼ inch nut driver.

For more information, producers can visit AP at Booth #181-Varied Industries Building at World Pork Expo, contact their AP dealer or visit