US 2817217 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 24, 1957 H. E. WINKLER ETAL AIR CONDITIONING MEANS a/Fled July 1, 1954 mid United States Patent AIR CONDITIONING MEANS Herman E. Winkler and Howard F. Murphy, Lebanon,
Ind., assignors to Stewart-Warner Corporation, Chrcago, Ill., a corporation of Virginia Application July 1, 1954, Serial No. 440,654
3 Claims. (Cl. 62-129) The present invention relates to the air conditioning of residential buildings and the like in which it is advantageous to mount the condenser and other components of the cooling equipment in the attic space.
The use of attic installed air conditioning equipment is complicated by attic temperatures which are ordinarily much too high, particularly when the cooling load is the greatest, for efficient condenser cooling. Moreover, the installation of air conditioning equipment in the attic of a completed building can be difficult and expensive.
Taking these considerations into account, one object of the invention is to provide an extremely practical and economical installation of air conditioning equipment in an attic, in which the air may be at a relatively high temperature, the installation including a condenser which is efiiciently cooled by the relatively cooler outside air.
A more specific object is to provide, in a very simple inexpensive way, for eflicient cooling of an attic installed condenser of air conditioning apparatus by outside air drawn in through a false chimney used conventionally to surround a flue from the building heating unit.
Another object is to provide for efficient cooling in a building attic of an air conditioning unit condenser by outside air supplied through simple, economical means adapted for universal use with buildings having widely different roof pitches.
A further object is to provide for efilciently cooling a residential type building by an improved air conditioning unit specially suited for easy installation in a ceiling support structure to support a condenser in the attic space and suspend a cooling evaporator below the ceiling.
Other objects and advantages will appear from the following description of the form of the invention illustrated in the drawing, in which:
Figure 1 is a partially sectioned elevational view showing one embodiment of the invention incorporated into a single story residential building;
Fig. 2 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view on an enlarged scale of the air conditioning unit of Fig. 1;
Fig. 3 is a simplified fragmentary plan view showing an intermediate step in the installation of the air conditioning unit of Fig. 2 in a ceiling opening in the building of Fig. 1;
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary plan view similar to Fig. 3 but showing the air conditioning unit turned into its installed position; and
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary vertical view, partially in section, showing modified means for supplying outside cooling air to an attic installed condenser.
As shown in the drawing, the air conditioning installation embodying the invention is incorporated into a single story residential building 10. A pitched roof 12 on the building covers attic space 14 above a horizontal ceiling structure 16. A vertical flue 18 from a combustion heater 20 in the building extends up through the attic space 14 to project above the roof 12.
A generally square false chimney shroud 22, somewhat larger in transverse section than the flue 18, encases the flue above the roof 12 and extends down through the roof for a substantial distance into the attic space 14. Ordinarily the shroud simulates a masonry chimney. A cover 24 over the upper end of the chimney shroud 22 is formed to prevent entrance of rain and snow while permitting free flow of outside air into the space 25 within the shroud around the flue 18. Flue and chimney shroud assemblies of this general character are frequently installed in residential type buildings even though no air conditioning of the building is contemplated.
It is also customary to provide a somewhat rectangular access or scuttle opening 26 through the ceiling structure 16 to the attic space 14. As indicated in Fig. 3, a typical access opening 26 is formed by eliminating a section of an intermediate joist 28 between two adjacent parallel joists 30 of the ceiling structure 16. Two spaced parallel cross pieces 32 secured to and extending between the two joists 30 are attached to the adjacent ends of the intermediate joist 28. The rectangular opening 26 thus formed is bounded at opposite sides by the cross pieces 32 and at opposite ends by the two joists 30.
Conceived for easy, economical installation and efficient operation in buildings of this general character, an improved air conditioning unit 34 provided by the invention is adapted to be readily mounted in the ceiling opening 26 to support a condenser 36 of the unit in the attic space 14 and suspend an evaporator 38 and a fan 40 below the ceiling 16.
A horizontally elongated head 42 on the upper end of the cooling unit 34 is adapted to be lifted vertically through the rectangular opening 26 (Fig. 3) and supported on the ceiling support structure 16 upon being turned at a right angle to the axis of elongation of the ceiling opening (Fig. 4).
The head 42 comprises -a rectangular peripherally flanged metal plate 44 somewhat smaller in length and width than the typical ceiling opening 26. The length of the plate 44, however, is greater than the width of the ceiling opening 26 and extends beyond opposite sides of the opening upon being turned crosswise of the opening, as shown in Figs. 1 and 4.
Four supports 46 threaded into the four corners of the plate 44 extend downwardly to shock mounts 47, which rest on elongated reinforcing members 48 laid on the ceiling support structure 16 below opposite ends of the plate 44. It necessary, the supports 46 are adjusted to level the unit.
The condenser 36 is mounted upright on one end of the plate 44 and supplied with hot compressed refrigerant from a motor driven compressor 52 on the other end of the plate.
Suitable frame members 54 fixed to the underside of the plate 44 extend down through the ceiling opening 26 from the central portion of the plate to form a support neck (also denoted by the numerals 54) having a maximum horizontal dimension substantially less than the length of the plate 44 and, preferably, no greater than the width of the plate 44 so that it may be turned freely in the ceiling opening 26 during installation and removal of the cooling unit 34.
A drip pan 56 fixed to the lower end of the neck 54 supports an annular evaporator 38 below the sealing structure 16. Liquefied refrigerant from the condenser 36 is supplied to the evaporator 38 through a line 60, and vaporized refrigerant from the evaporator is returned to the condenser 52 through a line 62.
A fan 40 centered substantially within the evaporator 38 is supported and rotated by a shaft 66 extending downwardly from an electric motor 68 mounted within the neck 54. The fan shown is of a combined axial and radial flow type designed to suck warm air from below the evaporator 38 to flow radially outward around the evaporator coils, as indicated by the arrows in Fig. 2.
Cooling air is drawn over the condenser 36 by a motor driven fan 69 mounted on the compressor side of the condenser. Efficient operation of the air conditioning unit 34 is achieved by cooling the condenser 36 with outside air at a temperature much lower than the ambient temperature within the attic space 14.
As shown in Figs. 1 and 2, the face of the condenser 36 remote from the fan 69 is connected with the lower end of the false chimney shroud 22 to receive outside air through the passage 25 in the shroud surrounding the flue 18. A simple inexpensive duct 70 is all that is required to make the connection between the condenser 36 and the false chimney 22.
Ordinarily the chimney 22 and the opening 26 in which the cooling unit 34 is mounted are both located near the center of the building 19. This not only simplifies the distribution of the cool air from the unit 34 but it makes for a very short duct connection 70 between the condenser 36 and the chimney. The short direct connection thus made through the false chimney 22 to the outside minimizes the air intake resistance and also minimizes the heat absorption by the incoming air before flowing through the condenser 36.
When the unit is mounted above a hallway, for example, as shown in Figs. 1 and 2, efiicient distribution of air cooled by the unit 34 is provided for by simple ducting structure to grilled openings 80 near the tops of room walls 72. More particularly, air cooled over the evaporator 38 passes between the ceiling structure 16 and a false ceiling 78 to the cold air outlets 86.
In review, it will be appreciated that installation of the air conditioning equipment described requires essentially that the cooling unit 34 be lifted up into the ceiling opening 26 (as shown in Fig. 3) and turned approximately 90 to the supported position shown in Fig. 4. The supports 46 are quickly adjusted to level the unit. A cooling air connection from the false chimney 22 to the condenser 36 is made by the short, simple duct 70. A suitable electric power supply (not shown) is provided for the compressor 52 and fans 40 and 69. If desired, rock wool or other insulation 81 may be laid in the ceiling opening 26 around the cooling unit neck 54. The cold air distributing structure 78, 80 is then installed under the ceiling 1.6.
In buildings not equipped with false chimneys or the like, attic installed air conditioning condensers may be efiiciently cooled by outside air brought in through moditied duct structure 82, as shown in Fig. 5. Structural elements of this figure similar to those appearing in Fig. 1 are indicated with the same reference numerals with the addition of letter a.
The air conditioning apparatus 84 mounted in the attic space 14a of Fig. 5 includes a compressor 52a which receives vaporized refrigerant through a line 62a from an evaporator (not shown) separately mounted in the building space below. From the compressor 52a the refrigerant enters an adjacent condenser 36a.
The duct structure 82 extends from the condenser 36a out through the roof 12a. The outer end of the duct structure protrudes through the roof and is protected by a suitable cover 86 shaped to provide for the free flow of air into the duct. A universally adjustable elbow 88 built into the duct structure 82 adapts the duct structure for use in buildings having roofs 12a of different pitches. A fan 69a draws outside air through the duct structure 82 and through the condenser 36a.
While we have shown and described preferred embodiments of our invention, it will be apparent that variations and modifications thereof may be made without departing from the principles and scope of the invention. We therefore desire, by the following claims, to include all such variations and modifications by which substantially the results of our invention may be obtained through the use of substantially the same or equivalent means.
1. In a residential type building a ceiling structure, a rectangular opening in the ceiling structure, and an air conditioning unit mounted so as to project through the opening, said air conditioning unit comprising a head portion including a compressor, a condenser connected to the refrigerant outlet from the compressor, and a fan positioned to blow air across said condenser, said head portion including a support member mounting said compressor, said condenser and said fan on its upper side and having a horizontal elongated shape and horizontal dimensions smaller than the corresponding dimensions of the ceiling opening and with the long dimension of said support member greater than the short dimension of the ceiling opening so that said head portion can be inserted through the ceiling opening from below and turned through about ninety degrees so that said support member may rest upon and be supported by the ceiling structure at the sides of the ceiling opening, a hanger structure depending from said support member and through the ceiling opening and having a maximum horizontal dimension in any direction less than the smaller dimension of said support member to permit turning said unit with said hanger structure in the ceiling opening, an evaporator suspended by said hanger structure at the under side of the ceiling and connected between the condenser and the inlet to the compressor, and a fan supported from the underside of said support member and positioned to blow air across said evaporator.
2. The combination set forth in claim 1, including short duct work at the under side of the ceiling communicating with said evaporator to carry conditioned air away from said evaporator under the force of said second named fan.
3. The combination set forth in claim 1, including a duct extending from a point outside the building to and communicating with the condenser to conduct air blown across said condenser by said first named fan to said point outside the building.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,180,915 Stebbins Nov. 21, 1939 2,247,028 Kuntz June 24, 1941 2,363,839 Dernuth Nov. 28, 1944 2,475,841 Jones July 12, 1949 2,682,757 Borgerd July 6, 1954