Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20030085022 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/008,226
Publication dateMay 8, 2003
Filing dateNov 6, 2001
Priority dateNov 6, 2001
Publication number008226, 10008226, US 2003/0085022 A1, US 2003/085022 A1, US 20030085022 A1, US 20030085022A1, US 2003085022 A1, US 2003085022A1, US-A1-20030085022, US-A1-2003085022, US2003/0085022A1, US2003/085022A1, US20030085022 A1, US20030085022A1, US2003085022 A1, US2003085022A1
InventorsCharles Viso
Original AssigneeViso Charles J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Bracket for heat exchange ventilation device
US 20030085022 A1
Abstract
A heat exchanger device includes an air duct, a thermal transfer unit disposed within the air duct, and at least one bracket fixed to the exterior of the air duct for mounting fluid lines line coupled to the thermal transfer unit to the outside of the duct. The bracket includes a base and an arm. The arm extends obliquely from the base, and has an aperture for receiving a fluid line. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct is also disclosed, and includes the steps of providing a bracket with a base and an arm, fixing the base of the bracket to the exterior of the duct, and engaging the fluid supply line in a receiving portion of the arm of the bracket.
Images(7)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(39)
I claim:
1. A heat exchange device, comprising:
at least a portion of an air duct;
a thermal transfer unit disposed within said air duct, said thermal transfer unit including at least one fluid supply line passing through a wall of said air duct; and
at least one bracket including a base fixed to the exterior of said air duct, and an arm extending from said base, said arm including a receiving portion for accepting said fluid supply line.
2. A heat exchange device according to claim 1, wherein said bracket consists essentially of a single piece of material.
3. A heat exchange device according to claim 2, wherein said receiving portion comprises an aperture formed in said arm of said bracket.
4. A heat exchange device according to claim 3, wherein said bracket comprises a flat piece of metal having a bend formed therein to form said base and said arm.
5. A heat exchange device according to claim 1, wherein said receiving portion comprises an aperture formed in said arm of said bracket.
6. A heat exchange device according to claim 5, further including a grommet disposed in said aperture of said bracket.
7. A heat exchange device according to claim 6, wherein said grommet is heat resistant.
8. A heat exchange device according to claim 6, further including a plurality of grommets, said plurality of grommets having the same outer diameters and different inner diameters.
9. A heat exchange device according to claim 1, wherein:
said base of said bracket lies in a first plane; and
said arm of said bracket lies in a second plane perpendicular to said first plane.
10. A heat exchange device according to claim 9, wherein said arm of said bracket extends in a direction oblique to said first plane.
11. A heat exchange device according to claim 9, wherein said arm of said bracket extends from said base a distance sufficient to engage said fluid supply line a spaced distance from the exterior of said air duct.
12. A heat exchange device according to claim 1 wherein said receiving portion of said arm is adapted to selectively engage or disengage said fluid supply line.
13. A heat exchange device according to claim 12, wherein said receiving portion comprises a hinged aperture.
14. A heat exchange device according to claim 1, wherein said arm of said bracket extends from a lateral edge of said base of said bracket.
15. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to an air duct, said method comprising:
providing a bracket having a base and an arm extending from said base, said arm including a receiving portion;
fixing said base of said bracket to the exterior of said air duct; and
engaging said fluid supply line in said receiving portion of said arm.
16. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to an air duct according to claim 15, wherein:
said receiving portion includes an aperture formed in said arm; and
said step of engaging said fluid supply line in said receiving portion of said arm includes routing said fluid supply line through said aperture.
17. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to an air duct according to claim 16, wherein:
said step of providing said bracket further includes providing a grommet in said aperture of said arm; and
said step of routing said fluid supply line through said aperture further includes routing said fluid supply line through said grommet.
18. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to an air duct according to claim 16, wherein said step of providing a grommet in said aperture further includes selecting a grommet having an inner diameter corresponding to the outer diameter of said fluid supply line.
19. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct according to claim 15, wherein:
said base of said bracket lies in a first plane;
said arm of said bracket lies in a second plane perpendicular to said first plane.
20. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct according to claim 19, wherein said arm of said bracket extends in a direction oblique to said first plane.
21. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct according to claim 15, wherein said step of engaging said fluid supply line in said receiving portion of said bracket, includes fastening said fluid supply line to said receiving portion.
22. A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct according to claim 21, wherein:
said receiving portion of said bracket comprises a hinged aperture; and
said step of engaging said fluid supply line in said receiving portion of said bracket further includes clamping said fluid supply line in said hinged aperture.
23. A bracket for mounting a fluid supply line to the exterior of a duct, comprising:
a base for coupling said bracket to said duct; and
an arm having a receiving portion formed therein for coupling said fluid supply line to said arm.
24. A bracket according to claim 23, wherein said bracket consists essentially of a single piece of material.
25. A bracket according to claim 24, wherein said receiving portion comprises an aperture formed in said arm of said bracket.
26. A bracket according to claim 25, wherein said bracket comprises a flat piece of metal having a bend formed therein defining said base and said arm.
27. A bracket according to claim 23, wherein said receiving portion comprises an aperture formed in said arm of said bracket.
28. A bracket according to claim 27, further comprising a grommet disposed in said aperture.
29. A bracket according to claim 28, wherein said grommet is heat resistant.
30. A bracket according to claim 28, further including a plurality of grommets, each of said grommets having the same outer diameter and a different inner diameter.
31. A bracket according to claim 23, wherein said base lies in a first plane, and said arm lies in a second plane perpendicular to said first plane.
32. A bracket according to claim 31, wherein said arm extends in a direction oblique to said first plane.
33. A bracket according to claim 31, wherein said arm extends from said base a distance sufficient to engage said fluid supply line a spaced distance from said duct.
34. A bracket according to claim 23, wherein said receiving portion comprises a hinged aperture adapted to selectively engage and disengage said fluid supply line.
35. A bracket according to claim 23, wherein said arm extends from a lateral edge of said base.
36. A heat exchange device, comprising:
at least a portion of an air duct;
a thermal transfer unit disposed within said air duct, said thermal transfer unit including at least one fluid supply line passing through a wall of said air duct; and
a bracket for coupling said fluid supply line to the exterior of said air duct, said bracket including securing means for securing said bracket to said air duct and coupling means for coupling said fluid supply line to said bracket a spaced distance from said securing means.
37. A heat exchanger box according to claim 36, wherein said coupling means further includes an insulating means for reducing thermal transfer between said fluid supply line and said bracket.
38. A heat exchanger box according to claim 36, wherein:
said securing means lies in a first plane; and
said coupling means lies in a second plane perpendicular to said first plane.
39. A heat exchanger box according to claim 38, wherein said coupling means extends in a direction oblique to said first plane.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates generally to ventilation ducts, and more particularly to a novel bracket and method for mounting a fluid supply line to a ventilation duct.

[0003] 2. Description of the Background Art

[0004] Many buildings have complicated Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems that must service many areas of the building. These HVAC systems typically include Variable Air Volume (VAV) boxes that are responsible for controlling the temperature in each of the HVAC system's service areas. VAV boxes generally encase at least one heat exchanger in one of its air ducts in order to heat the air passing through the VAV box. The heat exchanger is supplied with a hot fluid (e.g. hot water, steam, etc.) via a fluid supply line, the hot fluid heats the heat exchanger (e.g., a radiator), and the cooled fluid is returned to the source through a fluid return line to be reheated. The fluid supply and return lines are routed to the heat exchanger along the outside wall of the air duct.

[0005] Supply and return pipes are mounted to a VAV box as follows. The mounting process begins by mounting a piece of channel (e.g., UNISTRUT) to the air duct transversely to each fluid line. The fluid lines that service the heat exchanger are typically insulated, and run through valves and strainers that are also secured to the outside of the air duct. Thus, the fluid lines must be mounted a spaced distance from the air duct. In some cases, multiple pieces of channel must be bolted together in order to provide the necessary space between the fluid lines and the air duct. Each fluid line is then fixed to the channel using a compression clamp. An insulating insert (e.g., a calcium insert) is placed around each fluid line where the line is to be secured to the channel, to insulate the pipe from the channel and/or the clamp.

[0006] The above-described process of mounting the fluid lines to the heat exchanger is very time consuming and requires many mounting components, and is therefore expensive. Using the current process, a worker is able to route piping to only an estimated 1-6 heat exchangers per day. Furthermore, the parts needed for coupling both fluid lines to a single VAV box (e.g., channel, insulating inserts, clamps, etc.) are estimated to cost between $13 and $26 per heat exchanger.

[0007]FIG. 1 shows a cutaway view of a portion of a Variable Air Volume (VAV) box 100, and illustrates the current method of mounting fluid supply lines to a VAV box in greater detail. VAV box 100 includes an air duct 102, a heat exchanger 104, a fluid supply line 106, a fluid return line 108, and a plurality of support members 110(1-6). Support members 110(1-6) hold heat exchanger 104 in position within air duct 102, and insulates heat exchanger 104 from air duct 102. Heat exchanger 104 is also partially supported by fluid supply line 106 and fluid return line 108, and includes a large number of heat transfer fins 112 that are thermally coupled to pipe coils (not shown) that are in fluid communication with supply line 106 and return line 108.

[0008] Fluid supply line 106 delivers a heated or chilled fluid (e.g. water, glycol solution, steam, etc.) to heat exchanger 104. The heated liquid travels through the heating coils and transfers heat, via fins 112, to air flowing through air duct 102. The cooled liquid exits heat exchanger 104 and passes out of air duct 102 via fluid return line 108. Both fluid supply line 106 and fluid return line 108 make a 90 degree turn (into the plane of the page) outside duct 102, and are secured along the side of air duct 102.

[0009] VAV box 100 further includes a plurality of channels 114(1-2), a plurality of extension bolts 116(1-3) (including a plate, a washer, and a nut), a plurality of vent screws 118(1-2), and a plurality of compression clamps 120(1-2). Each of compression clamps 120(1-2) include an upper arm 122, a lower arm 124, a two-piece insulating member 126, and a clamping bolt 128. Each of channels 114(1-2) includes an engaging structure 130(1-2) (shown more clearly in FIG. 2) that extends the length of channels 114(1-2).

[0010] First channel 114(1) is secured to air duct 102 by vent screws 118(1-2). Extension bolts 116(1-3) secure second channel 114(2) to first channel 114(1) by engaging both the base of channel 114(2) and engaging structure 130(1) of channel 114(1).

[0011] Fluid supply line 106 is coupled to channel 114(2) by compression clamp 120(1). Upper arm 122 and lower arm 124 of clamp 120(1) encircle fluid supply line 106 and hook into channel 114(2) at engaging structure 130(2). A two-piece insulating member 126 between fluid supply line 106 and compression clamp 120(1) prevents the rubbing and rattling of fluid supply line 106 against compression clamp 120(1), and also provides thermal insulation. Tightening clamping bolt 128 securely fastens compression clamp 120(1) around fluid supply line 106, as well as, shifts upper arm 122 and lower arm 124 into a retained position in engaging structure 130(2). Fluid return line 108 is coupled to channel 114(2) in the same fashion.

[0012]FIG. 2 is a top view of VAV box 100 that more clearly shows a portion of compression clamp 120(1) and channels 114(1) and 114(2). Upper arm 122(1) and lower arm 124(1) (not visible in this view) include a pair of hooks 202 that engage engaging structure 130(2) when clamping bolt 128 is tightened. When fluid line 106 is mounted, fluid line 106 is disposed a distance “X” 204 from the outside wall of air duct 102. This offset compensates for inline fluid control devices (e.g. valves, strainers, etc.) and pipe insulation (not shown) that generally accompany fluid supply line 106. Furthermore, some offset 204 is always generated by pipe bend 206. Return line 108 is mounted the same way as supply line 106, but is hidden from view by supply line 106 in FIG. 2.

[0013] What is needed is a method and apparatus for coupling a fluid line to a heat exchanger in a ventilation duct that is quick and requires a reduced number of parts.

SUMMARY

[0014] The present invention overcomes the problems associated with the prior art by providing an inexpensive bracket that quickly and efficiently couples a fluid supply/return lines of a thermal transfer unit within an air duct to the exterior of the air duct.

[0015] One embodiment of a heat exchange device includes at least a portion of an air duct and a thermal transfer unit disposed within the air duct. The thermal transfer unit (e.g., a radiator) has at least one fluid supply line passing through the wall of the air duct. The fluid supply line is mounted to the exterior of the duct with a bracket that includes a base and an arm. The base of the bracket is fixed to exterior of the air duct, and the arm of the bracket includes a receiving portion for accepting the fluid supply line. In a particular embodiment, the bracket is made of a single piece of sheet metal, having a bend formed therein to define the base and the arm, and the receiving portion is an aperture formed in the arm.

[0016] In an alternate embodiment, the receiving portion of the bracket can selectively engage or disengage the fluid supply line. Optionally, the receiving portion of the arm comprises a hinged aperture.

[0017] Optionally, a heat resistant grommet is disposed in the aperture to reduce thermal transfer between the fluid line and the bracket, and to isolate potentially dissimilar metals from one another. In an alternate embodiment, a plurality of grommets, each having a different inner diameter, are provided to allow the bracket to be used with supply lines of different diameters.

[0018] In a particular embodiment, the base of the bracket lies in a first plane, and the arm of the bracket lies in a second plane perpendicular to the first plane. In a more particular embodiment, the arm of the bracket extends in a direction oblique to the plane of the base. The arm of the bracket extends from the base a distance sufficient engage the fluid supply line a spaced distance from the duct, to accommodate the disposition of devices (e.g., valve portions, insulation, etc.) between the fluid line and the duct.

[0019] A method for mounting a fluid supply line to a duct is also disclosed and includes the steps of providing a bracket having a base and an arm extending from the base, fixing the base of the bracket to the exterior of a duct, and engaging the fluid supply line within a receiving portion of the arm. In a particular method, the step of engaging the fluid supply line within the receiving portion includes fastening the fluid supply line to the receiving portion.

[0020] In one particular method, the receiving portion is an aperture and the step of engaging the fluid supply line within the aperture includes routing the fluid supply line through the aperture. In a more particular embodiment, the step providing a bracket further includes providing a heat resistant grommet in the aperture of the arm.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0021] The present invention is described with reference to the following drawings, wherein like reference numbers denote substantially similar elements:

[0022]FIG. 1 is an end view of a variable air volume box employing a known assembly for mounting a fluid line of a heat exchanger to the exterior of an air duct;

[0023]FIG. 2 is a top plan view (omitting the top of the air duct) of the fluid line mounting assembly of FIG. 1;

[0024]FIG. 3 is an end view of a variable air volume box employing a bracket of the present invention for mounting a fluid line of a heat exchanger to the exterior of an air duct;

[0025]FIG. 4 is a side view of the air duct of FIG. 3;

[0026]FIG. 5 is a side view of a bracket in accordance with the present invention;

[0027]FIG. 6 shows a bottom view of a bracket in accordance with the present invention; and

[0028]FIG. 7 shows an alternate bracket in accordance with the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0029] The present invention overcomes the problems associated with the prior art by providing an inexpensive bracket that efficiently couples a fluid line to an air duct. In the following description, numerous specific details are set forth (e.g. fastener types, grommet types, etc.) in order to provide a thorough understanding of the invention. Those skilled in the art will recognize, however, that the invention may be practiced apart from these specific details. In other instances, details of well known ventilation practices (e.g. inline valving, pipe assembly, etc. ) have been omitted, so as not to unnecessarily obscure the present invention.

[0030]FIG. 3 is an end view of a portion of a Variable Air Volume (VAV) box 300. VAV box 300 includes an air duct 302, a heat exchanger 304, a fluid supply line 306, a fluid return line 308, and a plurality of support members 310(1-6). Support members 310(1-6) hold heat exchanger 304 in position within air duct 302, and insulates heat exchanger 304 from air duct 302. Heat exchanger 304 is also partially supported by fluid supply line 306 and fluid return line 308, and includes a large number of heat transfer fins 112 that are thermally coupled to pipe coils (not shown) in fluid communication with supply line 106 and return line 108. Heat exchanger 304 is representative of any known (e.g. a radiator) or yet to be developed fluid based thermal transfer unit, including both heating and/or cooling devices.

[0031] Fluid supply line 306 delivers a heated fluid (e.g. hot water, glycol solution, steam, etc.) to heat exchanger 304. The heated liquid travels through the heating coils and transfers heat, via fins 312, to air flowing through air duct 302. The cooled liquid exits heat exchanger 304 and passes out of air duct 302 via fluid return line 308. Both fluid supply line 306 and fluid return line 308 make a 90 degree turn (into the plane of the page) outside duct 102, and are secured along the side of air duct 102, via brackets 314(1-2), respectively.

[0032] Each of brackets 314(1-2) includes a base 316(1-2) and an arm 318(1-2). Arm 318(1-2) has a receiving portion 320(1-2) formed therein. In this particular embodiment, receiving portions 320(1-2) are apertures formed in arms 318(1-2) for accepting fluid lines 306 and 308, respectively. Grommets 322(1-2) are disposed in apertures 318(1-2) to thermally and mechanically isolate lines 306 and 308 from brackets 314(1-2), respectively. Arms 318(1-2) are rounded at their distal ends for safety and aesthetics. Bases 316(1-2) each include a plurality of fastening apertures 324(1-2), and are mounted to duct 302 by a corresponding plurality of screws 326(1-2).

[0033] Grommets 322(1-2) protect fluid lines 306 and 308 from abrasion caused by rubbing against receiving portions 320(1-2), respectively, and prevent electrolysis of receiving portion 320(1-2) and/or fluid lines 306 and 308 caused by any dissimilarities in the metals of fluid lines 306 and 308 and brackets 314(1-2). Because fluid supply line 306 and fluid return line 308 carry heated liquid to and from heat exchanger 304, grommet 322(1) should be made of a heat resistant (e.g., temperatures in excess of 220 degrees Fahrenheit) material. The inventor has found that grommets available from McMaster-Carr, a distributor having a place of business in Los Angeles, Calif., as “Military Specification Buna-N Rubber Grommets”, having a temperture rating of −45°-+250° F., function satisfactory.

[0034] Arms 318(1-1) extends outward from the side of air duct 302 to engage fluid lines 306 and 308, respectively, a spaced distance from duct 302. This distance provides space between fluid line 306 and 308 and duct 302 to accommodate inline process control devices (e.g. valves, strainers, etc.), or to compensate for insulation (not shown) surrounding either the fluid lines 306 and 308, air duct 302, or both. In the embodiment shown in the figures, arms 318(1-2) have a fixed length. Therefore, the worker would simply choose a bracket 314 having the desired dimensions for a particular application. Optionally, arm 318(1) can be made adjustable, so that multiple distances can be accommodated with a single bracket.

[0035] Note that bracket 314(1) is identical to bracket 314(2) except that in the present view arm 318(2) extends obliquely in an opposite direction with respect the plane of base 316(2). For example, in the FIG. 3, arm 318(1) makes an angle of approximately −45 degrees with an axis passing perpendicularly through the center of base 316(1), whereas arm 318(2) makes an angle of approximately +45 degrees with an axis passing perpendicularly through the center of base 316(2).

[0036] Brackets 314 whose arms 318 extend obliquely in opposite directions (e.g., left-handed or right-handed) as shown, facilitate flexible positioning of brackets 314 by the assemblyman, as well as ensuring that one bracket does not interfere with the placement of another. For example, note that the base 316 of each bracket 314 is positioned either higher or lower than the fluid supply line to which it is mounted. This prevents the fluid lines from interfering with the mounting of base 316 to duct 302. Note also that brackets 314(1-2) can be mounted adjacent the top and bottom edges, respectively, of duct 302, where such ducts are typically more rigid due to the support of the adjacent wall of the duct. Further, brackets with angled arms allow fluid lines to be mounted slightly above and/or below a section of duct.

[0037] Further, VAV boxes such as VAV box 300 are sometimes assembled in the shop, where brackets 314 are mounted to duct 302 before any adjacent ducts are connected to duct 302. It is, therefore, sometimes necessary to mount brackets 314 near the open end of duct 302. It is therefore desirable for both of bases 316(1-2) to extend in the same direction (e.g., out of the page in FIG. 3). This prevents brackets 314 from extending past the open end of duct 302 and thereby interfering with the attachment of duct 302 to other duct work.

[0038]FIG. 4 is a side perspective view of air duct 302. Fluid supply line 306 and fluid return line 308 pass through receiving portions 320(1) and 320(2) of brackets 318(1) and 318(2) respectively, before making an orthogonal bend through air duct to connect with heat exchanger 304. Bases 316(1-2) are rectangular, and are fastened to the outside of air duct 302 by screws 326(1-2). In the present embodiment, screws 326(1-2) are self-tapping sheet metal screws. It should be noted that depending on the particular application, alternate methods (e.g. adhesive, welding, other fasteners, strapping, etc.) of securing bases 316(1-2) to air duct 302 could be employed.

[0039] Bracket 318(1) is installed as follows. First, the workman slides aperture 320(1), including grommet 322, over the stubbed end (not shown) of fluid supply line 306. Although grommets 322 are shown slightly spaced from the fluid lines 306 and 308 in the drawings for clarity, it should be understood that grommets 322 should fit as snuggly as is practical (considering e.g., thermal expansion, ease of mounting, etc.). After bracket 314(1) is slid into the desired position, base 316(1) is aligned flush with the outside of air duct 302. Base 316(1) is then secured to air duct 302 by driving screws 326(1) through fastening apertures 324(1) and into air duct 302. Note that the oblique disposition of arm 318(1) with respect to base 316(1) provides easy access to screws 326(1). Bracket 314(2) is mounted similarly. While each bracket 314 is mounted with two screws in FIG. 3, it should be understood that a greater or lesser number of screws 326 can be used, depending on the needs and parameters of a particular system.

[0040]FIG. 5 is a side plan view of bracket 314(2). Base 316(2) lies in a plane perpendicular to the plane of the page, and arm 318(2) lies in the plane of the page. Arm 318(2) extends obliquely from base 316(2), and receiving portion 320(2) comprises an aperture formed in the distal end of arm 318(2). Grommet 320(2) fits in aperture 320(2). Although arm 318(2) extends obliquely to the left of base 316(2), it is noted again that brackets (e.g., bracket 314(1)) can be made with arm 318 extending obliquely to the right. Utilizing different brackets 314 having arms extending left or right help assemblymen make better use of tight spaces, and avoid obstructions.

[0041]FIG. 6 is a bottom plan view of bracket 314. Base 316 is rectangular, and lies in the plane of the page. Arm 318 extends from the lateral (bottom in this view) edge of base 316. A plurality of unthreaded fastening apertures 324 are formed in base 316, to facilitate the passage of screws 326 (not shown) to fix bracket 314 to a duct.

[0042] Brackets 314 is manufactured from a single piece of sheet metal. First, bracket 314 is stamped from a flat sheet of metal. Next, fastening apertures 324 and receiving portion 320 are stamped and removed from bracket 318. Then, the flat metal piece is bent at a right angle to define base 316 and arm 318. Optionally, brackets 314(1-2) can be painted or powder coated for aesthetic and/or corrosion resistance purposes.

[0043] Bracket 314 is a particularly simple, and therefore valuable, embodiment of the present invention. It should be understood, however, that other embodiments of the invention are possible. For example, base 316 need not be perpendicular to arm 318. Rather, the angle between base 316 and arm 318 can be modified, and/or additional bends can be formed in arm 318, to vary the position of aperture 320 to accommodate any particular routing of a fluid line. Further, brackets can be formed from materials other than sheet metal (e.g., steel rod, plastic, ceramic, etc.). Additionally, providing a plurality of grommets, each having an outer diameter corresponding to the diameter of receiving portion 320, but having different inner diameters, permits bracket 314 to be used with fluid lines of many different diameters.

[0044] The advantages of bracket 314 should be readily apparent. First, the manufacture of bracket 314 is very simple and inexpensive, because it is simply stamped from sheet metal and bent into shape. Additionally, bracket 314 includes fewer parts, and is much easier for a worker to install, as compared to the accepted standard practice described in prior art FIGS. 1-2. This reduces installation time, and results in substantial labor cost savings.

[0045]FIG. 7 shows an alternate bracket 714 that can selectively engage or disengage fluid supply line 306. Bracket 714 includes a base 716, an arm 718 extending from base 716, and a two-piece grommet 722. Arm 718 includes a unshaped receiving end 730, a unshaped retaining member 732, a rivet 734, a fastening bolt 736, and bolt-receiving apertures 738. Retaining member 732 is coupled to the upper face of receiving end 730 by rivet 734, and is free to pivot about rivet 734. When retaining member 732 is in a closed position, fastening bolt 736 engages bolt-receiving aperture 738. Receiving end 730 and retaining member 732 define a receiving portion 740 that securely engages fluid supply line 306. A portion of grommet 722 is positioned in both receiving end 730 and retaining member 732 to permit fluid supply line 306 to be freely removed from bracket 714. This embodiment of the present invention is particularly useful in applications where the plumbing for a heat exchanger has already been installed, where bracket replacement is required, where additional brackets must be installed at a later time, or any other situation where it is impractical to slide a bracket aperture over the end of a pipe. Otherwise, it might be necessary to cut into the plumbing system in order to install a bracket.

[0046] The description of particular embodiments of the present invention is now complete. Many of the described features may be substituted, altered or omitted without departing from the scope of the invention. For example, alternate grommets or insulating means (e.g., calcium inserts, ceramic inserts, etc.) can be substituted for the high temperature rubber grommets disclosed. As another example, the present invention can be used to mount electrical heaters inside air ducts, by mounting electrical conduit (housing power lines to the heater) to the exterior of duct, instead of fluid lines. These and other deviations from the particular embodiments shown will be apparent to those skilled in the art, particularly in view of the foregoing disclosure.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7387013Nov 15, 2006Jun 17, 2008John Chris KaramanosMethod and system for controlling quality and tracking parts for repair and replacement of a piping system
US7444731Dec 6, 2006Nov 4, 2008Karamanos John CMethod for transporting a piping structure
US7537183Jul 12, 2005May 26, 2009Karamanos John CUniversal bracket for transporting an assembled conduit
US7596962May 5, 2006Oct 6, 2009Karamanos John CShipping and installation for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)
US7856865May 27, 2008Dec 28, 2010John Chris KaramanosMethod and system for controlling quality and tracking parts for repair and replacement of a piping system
US7937820Nov 3, 2008May 10, 2011Karamanos John CMethod for transporting a piping structure
US8146377Oct 5, 2009Apr 3, 2012Karamanos John CShipping and installation for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)
US8596083Mar 9, 2012Dec 3, 2013John C. KaramanosShipping and installation for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)
US8714236Jan 10, 2008May 6, 2014John C. KaramanosEmbedded heat exchanger for heating, ventilatiion, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and methods
Classifications
U.S. Classification165/67, 165/178
International ClassificationF28F9/00, F24F13/30
Cooperative ClassificationF24F13/30, F28F9/002
European ClassificationF24F13/30, F28F9/00A2
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Nov 6, 2001ASAssignment
Owner name: THERMA CORPORATION, INC., CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:VISO, CHARLES J.;REEL/FRAME:012373/0021
Effective date: 20011105