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 numberUS20050188456 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/788,261
Publication dateSep 1, 2005
Filing dateMar 1, 2004
Priority dateMar 1, 2004
Publication number10788261, 788261, US 2005/0188456 A1, US 2005/188456 A1, US 20050188456 A1, US 20050188456A1, US 2005188456 A1, US 2005188456A1, US-A1-20050188456, US-A1-2005188456, US2005/0188456A1, US2005/188456A1, US20050188456 A1, US20050188456A1, US2005188456 A1, US2005188456A1
InventorsJay Teitelbaum
Original AssigneeJay Teitelbaum
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Spa cover support and storage unit
US 20050188456 A1
Abstract
A device for supporting a spa cover after it has been removed from the top of a spa tub. The support is free-standing and contains one or more support devices, such as two or more rollers, onto which the spa cover is pushed or pulled. The support includes a storage area for spa accessories and other implements.
Images(4)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(18)
1. A fuel oil middle distillate composition consisting of:
A) a mineral oil having a cloud point of less than −8 C., a boiling range (90-20%) of less than 120 C., a 95% distillation point of less than 350 C. and a difference between CFPP and PP of less than 10 C., and
B) a flow improver consisting of:
1) one or more copolymers present in an amount of 0.001 to 2% by weight, based on the weight of the oil; wherein the copolymers have melt viscosities of from 20 to 10,000 mPas at 140 C. and wherein the copolymers consist essentially of a) and b):
a) bivalent structural unit (B1) present in an amount of from 85 to 97 mol %
wherein (B1) is a bivalent structural unit of formula (1)

—CH2—CH2—  (1)
and
b) one or more of the bivalent structural units (B2) present in an amount of from 3 to 15 mol %
wherein
(B2) is a bivalent structural unit of formula (2):

—CH2—CR1R2—  (2)
in which R1 is hydrogen or methyl Rs
R2 is COOR3, OR3 or OCOR3, and R3 is an alkyl radical having at least 4 and at most 30 carbon atoms,
wherein the copolymers consist of from 0 to 4% by weight of vinyl acetate and of from 0 to 5% by weight of further comonomers except vinyl acetate; and
wherein said fuel oil middle distillate contains other additives selected from the group consisting of dewaxing assistants, corrosion inhibitors, antioxidants, lubricity additives, sludge inhibiters, paraffin disperants, vinyl acetate-containing terpolymers or ethylene, and mixtures thereof.
2. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1. wherein R1 is hydrogen.
3. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein R3 of formula (2) in the bivalent structural units (B2) is C5-C24-alkyl or a neoalkyl radical having 7 to 11 carbon atoms.
4. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein R3 of formulae (2) in the bivalent structural units (B2) is C8-C18-alkyl or a neoalkyl radical having 8, 9, or 10 carbon atoms.
5. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the copolymers stated under B) have melt viscosities at 140 C. of from 30 to 5000 mPas.
6. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the copolymers stated under B) have melt viscosities at 140 C. of from 50 to 2000 mPas.
7. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the structural units of formula (2) of (B1) and (B2) stated under (B) are selected from the group consisting of vinyl ethers, alkylacrylates, alkyl methacrylates, higher olefins having at least 5 carbon atoms, and mixtures thereof.
8. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 7 wherein the higher olefins are selected from the group consisting of hexene, 4-methylpentene, octene, diisobutylene, and mixtures thereof.
9. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oils stated under A) have sulfur contents of less than 500 ppm.
10. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oils stated under A) have sulfur contents of less than 300 ppm.
11. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oils stated under A) have sulfur contents of less than 100 ppm.
12. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oil has a cloud point of below −15 C.
13. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oil has a boiling range (90-20%) of less than 100 C.
14. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the mineral oil has a boiling range (90-20%) of less than 80 C.
15. (canceled)
16. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the composition comprises from 85 to 96 mol % of comonomers (B1) and from 3 to 15 mol % of comonomers (B2).
17. The fuel oil composition as claimed in claim 1, wherein the composition comprises from 90 to 96 mol % of comonomers (B1) and from 4 to 10 mol % of comonomers (B2).
18. (canceled)
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention is directed to supports for spa covers when the spa is in use.

2. Description of the Prior Art

The last several years have seen a great increase in the utilization of outdoor spas for relaxation, as well as for therapeutic use. These spas include a reservoir filled from a source of heated water. The heated water would be injected into the reservoir through the use of a plurality of jets. Since the majority of these spas are designed for use in the outdoors, they generally are equipped with a cover adapted to be supported by a surface surrounding the periphery of the reservoir well of the spa, when the spa is not being utilized. The purpose of this cover is to reduce the cost of heating the water, as well as to prevent material, such as leaves or twigs from entering the reservoir. These leaves or twigs could prove to be unsightly, as well as to interfere with the operation of the spa. Additionally, the cover is used to prevent small animals from entering the reservoir well. Finally, the cover acts as protection to prevent small children from inadvertently entering the reservoir well, when it is left unattended by adults.

A typical cover for an above-ground spa would weigh in excess of 70 pounds to cover a typical square spa having a side-length of seven feet. Generally, the spa cover must be folded in half and removed from the top of the spa tub to obtain access to the spa. Additionally, when the spa cover is manually removed from the spa with no device to support the spa cover when the spa is in use, the spa cover would be placed on the ground possibly resulting in damage to the spa cover. Furthermore, lifting the spa cover to place it on top of the spa reservoir is very difficult since the top of the spa reservoir is at least three feet off the ground, thereby requiring the use of more than one person to properly position the spa cover over the spa.

Various U.S. patents have issued directed to the problem of removing a spa cover from the top of the spa tub reservoir, when the spa is in use and then replacing the spa cover after the spa has been utilized. Generally, these solutions require the implementation of a spa cover support directly attached to the spa.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,471,685, issued to Cross, is typical of this solution. This patent describes a support for hot tub spa covers including a pair of roller support arms 18 pivotally connected to the wall of the spa using an attachment member 20. In use, a cover 12 is folded in half and then pushed or pulled onto the roller support arms 18 after they pivot from a non-support position to a support position as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,644,803, issued to Wilson, details a spa cover support assembly including a support arm 12 which is pivotally attached at its bottom end to an external surface of a wall of the spa. In use, the support arm 12 pivots to the position shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. The spa cover 30 is folded in half and is supported by the support arm 12 as shown in FIG. 4.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,974,600, issued to Pucci et al, discusses a spa cover 12 including four panel assemblies 28, 30, 32 and 34 configured in a bi-folding manner. Cover members 28 and 30 are connected to one another by a hinge 58 as are cover members 32 and 34. Each of these pair of cover members are connected to respective lift assemblies operating in the manner shown in FIGS. 3A, 3B, 3C and 3D to remove the covers from the top of the spa.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,393,630, issued to Tedrick, describes a spa cover lifter including lift bars 23 and 24 used to hoist a spa cover 22 from the top of a spa, and then to replace the spa cover when the spa is no longer being used.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,550,077, issued to Tedrick, as well as U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,974,599 and 6,158,063, both issued to Tudor, also describe spa cover lifting devices provided with lifting elements.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,761,750, issued to Mazzola et al, shows a hot tub with an apparatus for removing the cover from the hot tub. The hot tub cover 46 is composed of a plurality of elongated, substantially rigid interlocking segments 48 connected to a covering and a removing apparatus 12 powered by a motor 21. The plurality of segments 48 travel over a roller provided in the covering apparatus 12 until the cover is completely removed and stored within the support structure 22 as illustrated in FIG. 2.

Spa cover removing devices such as described in the Cross, Wilson and Tedrick patents generally show the use of hydraulic-operated arms to remove and replace the spa cover from the spa tub or employ two L-type brackets which protrude off of one side of the spa tub and hold the folded spa cover parallel to the top of the spa tub. These devices are difficult to install, difficult to use, as well as potentially damaging to the spa tub by placing stress on the side wall of the spa tub. These devices could subject the spa tub wall to the stress of wind loads in addition to the weight of the spa cover. The “L” bracket type device also subjects the wall of the spa tub to the weight of the spa cover and is difficult to push or pull the spa cover over the “L” bracket, particularly when the spa cover is wet.

The patent to Mazzola et al, while not requiring the covering apparatus 12 to be attached to the spa, the covering apparatus is motorized and relatively expensive. Additionally, due to the operation of the system, only a spa cover having a plurality of rigid interlocking segments 48 could be employed.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The deficiencies of the prior art are addressed and rectified by the present invention. This invention contemplates the use of a free-standing spa cover support and storage unit in proximity to the spa tub, but not directly connected thereto. The spa cover support unit would be provided with two or more supports, such as a plurality of rotating rollers onto which the spa cover would be transported when the spa cover is removed from the top of the spa tub. These supports would be employed to assist in removing the spa cover in order to use the spa and in replacing the spa cover when the spa tub is no longer in use. Additionally, the spa cover support and storage unit would be provided with an accessible section for the storage of various spa accessories or other implements or provisions.

Since, for ease of operation, it is important that the top of the spa cover be at a height level with the top of the spa tub, the spa cover support and storage unit would be provided with a plurality of adjustable legs, allowing the height of the spa cover support and storage unit to be altered, based upon the height of the spa tub and to level and stabilize the spa cover support and storage unit.

Additional features and advantages of the invention will be set forth in the description which follows. It is to be understood that both the foregoing general description and the following detailed description are exemplary. In the drawings, it is understood that various elements of the drawings are not intended to be drawn to scale, but instead are sometimes purposely distorted for the purposes of illustrating the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the spa cover support and storage unit in proximity with a spa tub;

FIG. 2 is a side view of the spa support and storage unit shown in FIG. 1; and

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a second embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

A first embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The first embodiment details a relatively closed spa cover and support unit 10 as illustrated with respect to its use in conjunction with a standard spa tub 12. As shown in FIG. 1, the exterior of the spa tub 12 is rectangular and includes an oval shaped reservoir 14 into which heated water is introduced. The oval reservoir 14 is surrounded by a planar periphery surface 16. Although the spa tub 12 as shown in FIG. 1 is depicted as being rectangular in shape utilizing a oval-shaped reservoir 14, the exact shape of the spa tub, as well as the reservoir are not important. Additionally, although a typical spa is 36 inches high, the height of the spa is also not important to the present invention.

As shown in FIG. 1, a spa cover 18 is being removed from the top of the spa 12 onto a spa cover and storage unit 10. Arrow 26 indicates that the spa cover is being pushed or pulled from atop the periphery 16 of the spa 12 to be supported by the spa cover support and storage unit 10, thereby uncovering the reservoir 14. Generally speaking, the spa cover 18 would consist of two equal halves 22 and 24 connected together by a hinge 23 (see FIG. 2) extending for all or a portion of the width of the spa cover 18. When the spa cover 18 is covering the entire surface of the well reservoir 14, it would be supported by the periphery surface 16.

The spa cover support and storage unit 10 is free-standing and is not designed to be connected to the spa tub 12. The unit 10 includes a front wall 20, a first side wall 28, a second side wall (not shown) and a back wall (not shown). Although the width of the spa cover support and storage unit 10 is shown to be less than the width of the spa tub 12 as illustrated in FIG. 1, this is not of crucial importance since the width of the spa cover support and storage unit could be equal to, or even greater than the width of the spa tub. What is important is that the width of the spa cover support and storage unit 10 be large enough to support the spa cover 18 when it is removed from the top of the spa tub 12.

The spa cover support and storage unit 10 is provided with a recessed portion 30 covering at least a portion of the top surface of the spa cover support and storage unit 10. The recess is provided with walls 31, 33, 35 and 37. FIG. 1 illustrates a plurality of rollers 32 and 34 spanning the width of the spa cover support and storage unit 10, thereby each being attached to both side walls of the recess 30 in a manner allowing each of the rollers to freely rotate. The top surface of each of the rollers would extend above the top of the recess 30 as shown in FIG. 2. Additionally, although two rollers are illustrated with respect to FIGS. 1 and 2, it is noted that at least two rollers are required but that additional rollers may be provided in the recess 30 and the exact number of rollers is not crucial to the operation of the invention.

Additionally, as is illustrated in the drawings, the spa cover support and storage unit 10 is provided with a pair of doors 36 and 38 allowing access to the interior of the spa cover support and storage unit. Handles 40 and 46 would be used for access to the interior. Additionally, as shown in FIG. 1, hinges 48, 50, 52 and 54 would be provided. Furthermore, although two doors are shown in FIG. 1, it should be noted that a single door could be provided as well as any other type of manner to gain access to the interior of the spa cover support and storage unit 28. FIG. 2 shows two shelves 56, 58 in phantom, to hold various accessories or implements.

The spa cover support and storage unit 10 is provided with legs 60, 62 and 64. Although FIG. 1 only shows three legs, it can be appreciated that a fourth leg is also provided. Since it is important to change the height of the spa cover support and storage unit 10 based upon the height of the spa tub 12, the height of each of the legs can be changed in various manners. For example, each of the legs could include threads 66 and 68 (see FIG. 2) into which legs 60 and 62, respectively, are screwed in a manner to alter the height of the spa cover support and storage unit 10. It is noted that other types of hardware could be used with these legs to alter the height of the spa cover support and storage unit 10. Additionally, each of the legs could be provided with rollers which lock and unlock for ease of transport.

A second embodiment of the present invention is depicted in FIG. 3. This figure illustrates a relatively open spa cover support and storage unit 70. This unit contains a plurality of vertical support legs 72, 74, 76 and 78. These support legs hold a rectangular prop unit 81 in place. This prop unit consists of two longitudinal board members 80 and 82, supported by legs 72, 74, 76 and 78, respectively. Two side members 84 and 86 run between the support legs 72, 78 and 74, 76, respectively. Standard hardware supplies, such as bolts or screws, are used to connect these pieces together, such as is shown by bolts 92 and 94. Two rotating rollers 88 and 90 are provided between the two side members 84 and 86 to support the spa cover when it is uncovered from the spa tub. As was true with respect to the first embodiment of this invention, the exact number of rollers is not important. Additionally, as was true with respect to the first embodiment, the width of the spa cover support and storage unit 70 could be less than, equal to, or even greater than the width of the spa tub. What is important is that the width of the spa cover support and storage unit 70 be large enough to support the spa cover when it is removed from the spa tub. As shown in FIG. 3, although it is not of crucial importance, two struts 108 and 110 are provided between the support legs 72, 78 and 74, 76.

The unit 70 illustrated in FIG. 3 is provided with a shelf for the storage of material. Although a single shelf is shown, more than one horizontally situated shelving unit may be employed. The single shelf illustrated with respect to FIG. 3 includes a plurality of boundary members 96, 98, 100 and 102. A plurality of horizontally situated support beams 104 and 106 are shown. Although the support beams 104 and 106 are shown to be perpendicular to one another, this need not be the case and the support beams could run in only a single direction. Additionally, although discrete support beams are shown, it is noted that a solid planar surface could be employed instead of these support beams to support various spa or other types of supplies thereon. Additionally, the embodiment shown in FIG. 3 could include adjustable legs as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. For example, adjustable legs 60, 62, 64 (and a fourth leg) would be added to the bottom of legs 72, 74, 76 and 78 to change the height of each leg to allow the height of the spa cover support and storage unit 70 to be equal to the height of the spa. The height of these legs can be charged in various manners as would be true with respect to the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. Alternatively, the unit 10 shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 need not be provided with height adjustable legs, as is depicted in FIG. 3.

The exterior of the spa cover support and storage units 10 and 70 can be constructed from various types of wood such as quality cedar. It can also be constructed from metallic material such as stainless steel. Galvanized fasteners and galvanized steel sealed bearing rollers can be used to make the invention as weather resistant as possible. Additionally, the invention can be constructed of other materials, such as exterior grade lumber, plastic, polymers, composites or other metals.

In use, the spa cover support and storage units 10 and 70 are placed proximate to the spa tub 12 in a location which is as level as possible. The height of the legs are then adjusted, if necessary. To remove the spa cover 18 from the top of the spa tub 12, the spa cover 18 is folded in half from the outside of the spa tub and then, from either the inside or the outside of the spa tub, the spa cover 18 is pushed onto the rollers 30 of the spa cover support and storage units 10 and 70. Once the cover 18 is pushed or pulled onto the top of the spa cover support and storage units 10 and 70, the spa cover 18 is supported, flat and parallel to the top of the spa tub 12. When it is desired to remove the spa cover 18 from the top of the spa cover support and storage unit 10 to cover the reservoir 14, the cover 18 is pushed or pulled from either the interior of the reservoir 14 or the exterior of the spa tub 12 and then unfolded thereby completely covering the spa tub.

While the present invention has been described with reference to various embodiments, these embodiments are offered by way of example, not by way of limitation. Various additions, deletions and modifications can be made to the embodiments of the present invention by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. Accordingly, all such additions, deletions and modifications are deemed to lie within the spirit and scope of the present invention.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8096294 *Oct 8, 2008Jan 17, 2012Jenkins Richard DSpa water heating apparatus and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification4/498
International ClassificationE04H4/08, A47K3/00
Cooperative ClassificationE04H4/08, A47K3/001
European ClassificationA47K3/00B, E04H4/08