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Publication numberUS3253741 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 31, 1966
Filing dateJan 21, 1965
Priority dateJan 21, 1965
Publication numberUS 3253741 A, US 3253741A, US-A-3253741, US3253741 A, US3253741A
InventorsAnderson Alvin B, Russell Sheldon P
Original AssigneeWesley Mfg Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Car wash device
US 3253741 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

y 1966 s. P. RUSSELL ETAL 3,253,741

CAR WASH DEVICE Filed Jan. 21, 1965 MN. m1%N. W

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United States Patent 3,253,741 CAR WASH DEVICE Sheldon P. Russell and Alvin B. Anderson, Minneapolis,

Minn, assignors to Wesley Manufacturing Co., Minneapolis, Minn, a corporation of Minnesota Filed Jan. 21, 1965, Ser. No. 426,824 4 Claims. (Cl. 222-52) This invention relates to a dispensing apparatus and more specifically to a dispensing apparatus system having special utility as a car Wash installation.

An object of this invention is to provide a novel car wash apparatus system having a hand type nozzle dispenser and having control means which is operable to maintain a predetermined desired concentration of a detergent solution in a dispensing tank which supplies the detergent solution to the nozzle dispenser, thereby obviating the need of an attendant for recharging the dispening tank with detergent solution.

Another object of this invention is the provision of a car wash dispensing apparatus system with a mixing and dispensing unit including a detergent reservoir interconnected in communicating relation with a dispensing reservoir, and control means for sensing the changes in concentration of the detergent solution in the dispensing reservoir whereby a desired concentration of liquid detergent will be available constantly for dispensing through a hand type nozzle dispenser.

A more specific object of this invention is to provide a compact mixing and dispensing structure interconnected in communicating relation to pump means having a hand type dispenser nozzle especially adaptable in washing cars and the like, the mixing and dispensing unit including a compartmented tank, which consists in a dispensing compartment and a detergent compartment, and a sensing probe capable of sensing changes in the concentration of the detergent solution in the dispensing tank and being operable for replenishing detergent to the dispensing tank so that the desired concentration therein may be maintained.

These and other objects and advantages of this invention will more fully appear from the following description made in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein like reference characters refer to the same or similar parts throughout the several views and in which:

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic illustration of the invention; and

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view on an enlarged scale of the mixing and dispensing structure and with certain parts thereof broken away for clarity.

Referring now to the drawings and more specifically to FIG. 1, it will be seen that one embodiment of the car wash apparatus system designated generally by the reference numeral is thereshown. It is preferred that the apparatus system be provided with water softening means which includes a water softening unit 11 and a brine tank.

for use in recharging the water softening unit. A conduit 13 supplies water to the water-softening unit 11 and the water is discharged from the water-softening unit 11 through a conduit 14 into a conventional water heater 15. The water heater 15 may be of conventional construction and include a water tank having suitable heating means such as a gas or electric heater to permit rapid heating of the water in a well known manner. The heated water is conducted from the water heater 15 through a conduit 16 to a mixing and dispensing structure 17.

The mixing and dispensing structure 17 includes a compartmented tank 18 comprised of a dispensing compartment or tank 19 and a detergent compartment or reservoir 20. Referring now to FIG. 2 it will be noted that the detergent reservoir 20 is disposed in the upper portion of the dispensing tank 19 and is secured thereto by weldice ing or the like. The dispensing tank and detergent reservoir are of generally rectangular construction and a re-v movable cover or closure member 21 having depending peripheral flanges 22 closes the top of the compartmented tank structure. The dispensing tank 19 has a pair of openings in the bottom wall 23 thereof, each of which is connected to one of a pair of conduits 24 through which the detergent solution is discharged.

The conduit 16 is connected to a fitting secured to one of the side walls of the dispensing tank 19 and the fitting is connected to avalve 23 disposed interiorly of the dispensing tank 19. The valve 23 has a discharge port which communicates with the interior of the housing 19 for supplying water into the dispensing tank. The discharge port may be opened and closed by a valve element 24 which is actuated by an actuating arm 25 of a valve ball float structure 26. This float structure is pivotally connected to the valve 23 and permits the valve element to be moved to the open position as the Water level within the dispensing tank 19 falls. Water is then introduced into the dispensing tank through the discharge port of the valve 23 until the valve float structure 26 is elevated to a position whereby the valve element 24 is moved to the closed position with respect to the discharge port.

The valve 23 is also provided with a second discharge port which is maintained in an unobstructed condition and which communicates with a conduit 27 which is connected by a suitable fitting 28 to one of the side walls of the detergent reservoir 20. It will be noted as best seen in FIG. 2, that the end portion of the conduit 27 actually projects interiorly of the detergent reservoir 20 so that water can be supplied thereto. A normally closed solenoid valve mechanism 29 is interposed in flow controlling relation with respect to conduit 27 and is operable when energized to permit water to flow into the detergent reservoir 20. The operation of the solenoid valve mechanism 29 will be described more fully hereinbelow.

The bottom wall 30 of the detergent reservoir has a substantially centrally located discharge outlet therein through which projects an elongate vertically disposed over-flow or standpipe 31. It will be noted that the standpipe 31 is secured to the bottom wall 30 of the reservoir structure byfitting 32 and that the upper end of the standpipe is disposed closely adjacent the upper portion of the reservoir structure thereby requiring a relatively high water level within the reservoir before the solution will overflow into the standpipe. The lower end portion of the standpipe communicates with the dispensing tank 19, so that when the liquid solution within the detergent reservoir exceeds a predetermined level, this excess solution will flow through the standpipe and into the dispensing tank.

The detergent reservoir 20 is provided with a concentrated solution of detergent which is supplied to the dispensing tank wherein it is diluted with the water contained therein. The detergent may be in the form of a powder or liquid and will be diluted somewhat in the detergent reservoir by the addition of water. In order to introduce a concentrated amount of detergent solution into the dispensing tank from the detergent reservoir, the water must be added to the detergent reservoir through the conduit 27 until the liquid level within the detergent reservoir is such to permit the liquid to pass through the standpipe and into the dispensing tank. Thus, the solenoid valve mechanism 29 must be energized to permit the flow of water into the detergent reservoir and means are provided for energizing the solenoid valve mechanism 29.

It will also be noted that water is constantly added to the dispensing tank 19 by action of the valve and valve float structure as the liquid therein is removed. Thus, as Water is introduced into the dispensing tank, it is also Patented May 31, 1966v valve mechanism 29 when the concentration of the detergent solution within the tank 19 falls below a desired predetermined level. When this occurs, water is supplied to the detergent reservoir 20 so that the detergent solution willflow into the dispensing tank 19 until the desired concentration is approximated at which time the solenoid valve mechanism 29 will be de-energized. This control means includes a control unit 33 which is mounted on the side of the compartmented tank structure 18 by suitable bracket 34. This control unit is an electrical sensing type such as that manufactured by Economics Laboratory, Inc., of Saint Paul, Minnesota, and sold under the trademark Solu-Matic 24. The control unit 33 has suitable switch means therein and is connected to a suitable source of electrical power by electrical conductor means 35. It will also be noted that the control unit is connected in circuit controlling relation with respect to the solenoid valve mechanism 29 by suitable electrical conductor means 36.

A conductivity cell 37 is mounted on the compartmented tank structure 18 and includes a sensing probe 38 which projects into the dispensing tank 19 as best seen in FIG. 2. This sensing probe includes a pair of electrode elements suitably insulated from each other and which are connected by suitable conductor means 39 to a control unit 33. The control unit 33 is also provided with a master switch 40 so that current is supplied to the conductivity cell 37 when the switch 40 is closed. To this end it is pointed out that the transformer is preferably provided for use with the control unit 33. This transformer may be of a 220/ 110/20 volt capacity so that the conventional 220 or 110 volt, 50-60 cycle single phase, A.C. power source may be suitably stepped down.

It is pointed out that the conductivity cell 37 is actually disposed in circuit controlling relation with respect to the solenoid valve mechanism 29. During operation of the control means, the conductivity cell will have its respective electrodes in contact with the solution within the dispensing tank 19 and when the concentration of the detergent solution falls below a predetermined level, the control unit 33 is operable so that certain switches are closed and current is supplied to the solenoid valve mechanism 29 to energize the same and to permit water to flow into the detergent reservoir 20. When this occurs, the conc'entrated detergent solution will flow through the standpipe and into the dispensing tank 19 until the desired concentration of detergent. solution is approximated, at which time the sensitivity cell 37 is operative to de-energize the solenoid valve mechanism.

It will be seen that the discharge of water through the conduit 27 into the detergent reservoir is located at the lower portion of the reservoir so that the water will be thoroughly admixed with the detergent solution in the reservoir. This arrangement permits concentrated detergent solution to be discharged through the standpipe 31.

The conductivity cell 37 in sensing changes in the concentration of the detergent solution within the dispensing tank 19 actually senses changes in the pH of the liquid therein. Thus, when the detergent solution becomes more dilute, the pH of the solution drops. The change in the pH affects the electrical conductivity of the solution Within the dispensing tank and this change in conductivity is sensed by the conductivity and preferably amplified in the control unit 33. for control of the solenoid valve mechanism.

The detergent solution is discharged from the dispensing tank 19 through one of a pair of conduits 24 into one of a pair of substantially identical high-pressure pump devices 41. It will be noted that a valve 42 is interposed in flow controlling relation with respect to each of the conduits 24 and that a conduit 43 interconnects each valve 42 in communicating relation with its associated high pressure pump device 41. The pump devices 41 are preferably of the type manufactured by L & A Products, Inc., of Saint Paul, Minnesota, and known in the trade as Model 202. It will be noted that each of these pump devices 41 is interconnected to the supply conduits 16 by conduits 44 so that fresh water may be supplied to the pump devices when it is so desired. Suitable valves 45 are interposed in flow controlling relation with respect to conduits 44 and it is pointed out that the pump units 41 have manifold arrangements with valve controls to permit fresh water to be dispensed therefrom or alternatively a detergent solution be dispensed therefrom. The control means for operating the pumps 41 may comprise a switch control 46 which is preferably remotely located with respect to the pump units 41 and which has suitable indicia thereon to permit selective dispensing of clear water or detergent solution from the pumps. It willbe noted that the switch control 46 is connected by suitable electrical conductor means 47 to the pump devices 41.

The high pressure pump device 41 is connected by conduit 48 to a hand type dispensing nozzle mechanism 49 which is capable of dispensing a spray of varying size. Although only one nozzle dispensing mechanism 49 is shown, the other conduit may also have such a dispenser connected thereto. Alternatively, the hand type nozzle dispensing mechanism 49 may also-be capable of being detached from one conduit and connected in communicating relation with respect to the other conduit. It is preferred that the hand type nozzle dispenser 49 be located in an area remote from the remaining apparatus with the exception of the control switch means 46. Such an area is preferably a partially enclosed washing bay of the drive-in type whereby an operator may drive his vehicle therein and by actuating the control switch 46, perform a washing operation on his vehicle.

During such operation, the vehicle will be washed first with a detergent solution and thereafter rinsed with water by manipulation of the switch. The control switch 46 may be coin operated with suitable timer means provided to permit the operator to control operation of the pump devices 41 for a predetermined period of time.

It will be seen that as the detergent solution is removed from the dispensing tank 19, water will be introduced therein through the valve 23 and the detergent solution will become more diluted. When the concentration of detergent solution falls below a predetermined level, the conductivity cell 37 will operate to energize the solenoid valve mechanism 29 and supply water to the detergent reservoir 20. As water is introduced into the detergent reservoir, the detergent solution will flow through the standpipe 31 and thereafter into the dispensing tank until such time that the concentration of the detergent within the dispensing tank has reached the predetermined desired level. The solenoid valve mechanism 29 will then be deenergized and will remain so .until the concentration of detergent within the dispensing tank again falls below the predetermined level.

Thus, the desired concentration of detergent solution within the dispensing tank may be accurately and automatically maintained without the necessity of an attendant constantly replenishing or recharging the detergent solution into the dispensing tank. It will be necessary, of course, to replenish the supply of detergent within the detergent reservoir, but this recharging of the detergent reservoir is only necessary after substantial intervals of time. The concentration of detergent solution within the detergent reservoir may be such that only a small amount of solution need be added to the dispensing tank to maintain the desired level of detergent solution Within the dispensing tank.

Thus, it will be seen from the foregoing, that a novel car wash dispensing apparatus system has been provided which is especially adaptable for a drive-in type car wash installation. It will be noted from the preceding paragraphs that the present invention obviates the presence of an attendant since means are provided for maintaining the desired concentration of liquid detergent which may be used in the apparatus system.

Thus, it will be seen that not only is the present car wash apparatus system of simple and inexpensive construction, but an apparatus system which functions in a more efiicient manner than any heretofore known comparable systems.

It will, of course, be understood that various changes may be made in the form, details, arrangements and proportions of the various parts Without departing from the scope of this invention.

What is claimed is:

1. A car wash dispensing system for use in dispensing a non-concentrated detergent solution, said system comprising a dispensing tank having an inlet connected in communicating relation to a source of water under pressure and having an outlet,

a discharge nozzle mechanism connected in communicating relation with said outlet,

pressure pump means interposed in flow controlling relation between said discharge nozzle mechanism and said dispensing tank,

a detergent reservoir structure containing a predetermined amount of concentrated detergent solution and having an inlet connected in communicating relation to a source of water under pressure and having an outlet, said outlet communicating with said dispensing tank and being spaced above the bottom of said reservoir structure whereby when the amount of detergent solution within said reservoir structure exceeds a predetermined volume, the excess detergent solution will flow through the outlet into said dispensing tank,

electric valve mechanism interposed in flow controlling relation with respect to said inlet of said detergent reservoir structure, said valve mechanism when deenergized preventing the flow of water into the reservoir structure and when energized allowing water to flow into said reservoir structure,

an electrical sensing probe mechanism projecting into said dispensing tank and being connected to a source of electrical current and arranged in circuit controlling relation with respect to said electrical valve mechanism, said sensing probe mechanismv being operable when the detergent solution within said dispensing tank falls below a predetermined concentration to energize said electrical valve mechanism and thereby permit water to be introduced into said reservoir structure so as to cause the detergent solution to pass through the outlet of the reservoir structure into said dispensing tank until the concentration of detergent solution within said dispensing tank approximates the predetermined concentration, said sensing probe mechanism being operable to deenergize said valve mechanism when the concentration of detergent solution within said dispensing tank substantially equals said predetermined concentration.

2. A car wash dispensing system for use in dispensing a detregent solution, said system comprising a hollow tank structure having partition means therein to form the interior thereof into a detergent reservoir compartment and a dispensing compartment,

each compartment having an inlet connected in communicating relation to a source of water under pressure, and each compartment having an outlet, said outlet of said detergent reservoir compartment communicating with said dispensing compartment and being spaced above the bottom of the detergent reservoir compartment whereby when the amount of detergent solution within said detergent reservoir compartment exceeds a predetermined volume, the excess detergent solution will flow through the outlet into said dispensing tank,

a discharge nozzle mechanism connected in communicating relation with said outlet of said dispensing compartment,

pressure pump means interposed in flow controlling relation between said discharge nozzle mechanism and said dispensing compartment,

electric valve mechanism interposed in flow controlling relation with respect to the inlet of said detergent reservoir compartment, said valve mechanism when de-energized preventing the flow of water into the detergent reservoir compartment and when energized allowing water to flow into said detergent reservoir compartment,

a control unit mounted exteriorly of said tank structure and being connected to a source of electrical current, said control unit being connected to said electric valve mechanism in circuit controlling relation therewith,

an electrical sensing probe mechanism projecting into said dispensing compartment and being connected to said control unit, said sensing probe mechanism being operable with said control unit when the detergent solution within said dispensing compartment falls below a predetermined concentration, to energiZe said electrical valve mechanism and thereby permit water to be introduced into said detergent reservoir compartment thereby causing the detergent solution to pass through the outlet of said last mentioned compartment into said dispensing compartment until the concentration of detergent solution within the latter approximates said predetermined concentration,

said sensing probe mechanism and said control unit then being operable to de-energize said valve mechanism and thereby stop the flow of Water into said detergent reservoir compartment.

3. A car wash dispensing system as defined in claim 2, and a heart valve mechanism shiftably connected to the inlet of said dispensing compartment and being operable to open said last mentioned inlet when the liquid within said dispensing compartment falls below a predetermined level, and said float valve mechanism being shiftable to close said last mentioned inlet when the liquid within said dispensing compartment substantially equals said predetermined level.

4. A car wash dispensing system as defined in claim 2 wherein said electric valve mechanism is positioned within said tank structure.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 4/1937 Ofeldt 29984 6/1963 Douty 22252

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2077257 *Jan 3, 1935Apr 13, 1937Ofeldt Frank WSpray producing method and apparatus
US3095121 *Oct 20, 1960Jun 25, 1963Amchem ProdChemical feed control system
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3378167 *Mar 7, 1967Apr 16, 1968Emerson CampbellAuxiliary apparatus for self-service auto-wash unit
US4289026 *Sep 28, 1979Sep 15, 1981Hoechst AktiengesellschaftLevel indicating device
US4544084 *Jun 22, 1984Oct 1, 1985Cleland Robert KBeverage dispenser
US4733798 *Feb 5, 1986Mar 29, 1988Ecolab Inc.Method and apparatus for controlling the concentration of a chemical solution
US4858449 *Jan 9, 1986Aug 22, 1989Ecolab Inc.Chemical solution dispenser apparatus and method of using
US4964185 *Nov 18, 1988Oct 23, 1990Ecolab Inc.Chemical solution dispenser apparatus and method of using
US5647391 *Apr 11, 1996Jul 15, 1997Diversey CorporationMethod for controlling the mixing of a solution
US6267496 *Dec 3, 1998Jul 31, 2001Bryan RealBeverage supply apparatus for dispensing machine
US6349852May 4, 2000Feb 26, 2002Bunn-O-Matic CorporationCold beverage refill system
US6446835Jun 26, 2001Sep 10, 2002David F. FordCold beverage refill system
USRE32763 *Aug 27, 1986Oct 11, 1988Ecolab Inc.Cast detergent-containing article and method of making and using
USRE32818 *Aug 27, 1986Jan 3, 1989Ecolab Inc.Cast detergent-containing article and method of using
Classifications
U.S. Classification222/52, 222/64
International ClassificationB60S3/04
Cooperative ClassificationB60S3/044
European ClassificationB60S3/04C