US 3280407 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 25, 1966 M. AARON TANK FLUSHING APPARATUS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 16, 1966 INVENTOR. M. A A r? O/V FIG. 3
United States Patent O 3,280,407 TANK FLUSHING APPARATUS Maurice Aaron, 16 Harnlin Road, Highland Park, NJ. Filed Feb. 16, 1966, Ser. No. 527,988 s Claims. (Cl. 4 47 This invention relates to fluid-containing tanks and, particularly, to Operating apparatus including flush valves for tanks such as toilet tanks.
My U.S. Patent No. 3,183,526 discloses a novel valve mechanism for a toilet tank. This valve mechanism operates well; however, if for some reason, water in the tank rises uncontrollably, the valve mechanism will operate automatically and will flush the tank. Under some circumstances, this automatic flushing may be undesirable. The valve mechanism of the present invention has all the advantages of my prior invention, and, in addition, includes means for preventing automatic operation thereof.
Briefly, the valve mechanism of the invention includes an elongated, flexible, open-ended tube mounted vertically in the tank with one end secured to the outlet pipe of the tank, and with its upper open end positioned just above the level of water in the tank. At this upper end the tube is provided with a cup which is adapted -to be filled with water during the tank-flushing operation. T-he cup is also provided with holes for draining the fluid therefrom after the tank-draining operation has been performed to permit the tube to return to its upright position and thus to prepare it for the next flushing operation. According to the invention, in order to prevent automatic flushing, the cup is provided with a cover member and associated apparatus which permit overflow water to flow harmlessly out of the tank but prevent flow of water into the cup and resultant undesired flushing. Flushing does not occur 'until the apparatus is positively operated and the cover is raised.
In the drawing:
FIG. l is an elevational view, partly in section, of apparatus embodying the invention;
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the apparatus of the invention as it appears in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an elevational View, partly in section, of a portion of the apparatus of FIG. 1 at one stage in its operation;
FIG. 4 shows the apparatus of FIG. 3 at a later stage in its operation; and
FIG. 5 is a generally schematic representation of one mode of using the apparatus of the invention.
The apparatus of the invention has broad utility and may be employed in many different types of liquid-containing tanks. It is especially suited for use in watercontaining toilet tanks, and it is this use of the invention that is described in detail herein. Generally, a toilet tank comprises a container having a bottom wall 14 which contains a fluid outlet pipe 18. The tank also contains a conventional overflow pipe (not shown) and a conventional water inlet pipe and valve 24 which is controlled by the usual ball 25.
The flushing valve apparatus of the invention 26 includes an open-ended, hollow, flexible tube 30 which is oriented vertically and has its lower end 34 secured to the fluid outlet pipe 18 and its upper open end positioned just above the surface of the water 38 in the tank. The tube 30 is intended to be collapsed and expanded, in accordion fashion over outlet pipe 18, and, to facilitate this function and keep the tube open as it collapses, a plurality of rigid reinforcing rings 42 are positioned inside the tube, spaced apart convenient distances along the length of the tube.
The tube 30 is made of rubber or any other suitable resilient material so that it can perform the desired expansion and contraction along its axis.
The hollow tube 30 is secured at its lower end to the outlet pipe 18. Any suitable securing arrangement may be employed. As an example, the lower end 34 of the tube 30 may be of a smaller diameter than the open end of the pipe, and it may thus firmly engage a lip 48 formed on the pipe. A clamp (not shown) may also be used, if required.
At the upper end of the tube 30 is provided a cup 50 which is defined by an outer annular vertical Wall 54 and a spaced inner annular vertical wall 58 which are connected by a horizontal base portion 60. The annular space 64 between both walls serves as a water-containing cup for the flushing operation. The cup may be circular or oval, or it may have any other suitable shape. The cup includes means for removing water therefrom at the end of a flushing operation to permit tube 30 to function in normal fashion. The simplest and preferred means comprises a plurality of holes 68 in the inner wall 58, at its base, the holes providing communication between the fluid-containing space 64 between the walls and the inside of the tube 30.
The cup 50 may be formed integral with the upper end of the tube, or it may include a central tubular portion 72 having a lip 78 which is engaged by the upper open end of the tube 30. The cup is made of rubber or other suitable material.
According to the invention, the cup 50 is provided with a cover or lid 80 which is adapted to be seated loosely, resting on the top edge 84 of the outer wall 54 of the cup. The cover has a greater diameter than the cup, and it includes an annular lip %which extends downwardly from the base and lies closely adjacent to the inside of the wall 54 of the cup at its upper end. The lip extends downwardly a distance sufficient to prevent the cover from sliding laterally on the cup. The coveris of a suitable thickness, and it' is provided with a generally rectangular slot 94 which is positioned approximately at its center. Slot 94 preferably has a length which is approximately equal to the diameter of the circular wall 58 of the cup 50.
An adjusting rod 98 is secured at its lower end to a spider 100 which is secured in the outlet pipe 18, and the threaded upper end 101 of the rod 98 extends through the slot 94 in the cover, and it is held in place by means of a nut 102. A vertical adjustment of the elevation of the tube 30 and the cup 50 can be made by adjustmen-t of the nut 102 on the rod 98.
The Operating apparatus of the invention includes a disk which is seated within the central opening formed by the inner wall 58 of the cup 50. The disk 110 is pro vided with a central aperture 114 through which the rod 98 passes, and the wall 118 which defines the aperture 114 tapers outwardly as it proceeds from the upper surface of the disk to the lower surface.
The cover 80 is secured to the usual trip lever arm 120 by means of a wire or chain 124 secured to the edge of the cover 80.
In operation of .the invention, initially, the tank 10 is filled with water to a suitable level, and the tube 30 is in an expanded upright position, With the top of the cup positioned above .the level of the water by adjustment of nut 102 on rod 98. The tube 30 is operated by filling the cup 50 with water so that tube 30 collapses and water in the tank flows through collapsed tube 30 and out of outlet 18.
During normal operation of the valve apparatus of -the invention 26, when it is desired not to operate the valve tube 30, the cover 80 prevents water from entering the cup 50 and causing automatic operation of the valve. It can be seen that, if the water level rises due to buoy-ancy, .the cup 50 will rise and bear against the cover and. thus provide a tight seal between the cover and the cup through which water cannot flow. If the water should rise above the cup, it will flow through the slot 94 in the cover down tube 30 and out through the outlet pipe 18 without causing operation of the valve.
' When it is desired to operate the valve 26, the trip lever 120 is operated by 'being rotated counter-clockwise as seen in FIG. 1 and an upward pull is applied to the cover 80 through the wire 124. This causes the entire cup 50 and cover 80 to pivot and rotate ina clocwise direction as seen in FIG. l. This rotation continues with the cover firmly in place until the rod 98 bears against the tapered wall 118 of the aperture 114 in the disk 110 (FIG. 4). This ergagement of the rod and the disk prevents further rotation of the cup and cover, and continued upward pull on the wire 124 causes the cover to be raised away from the cup (FIG. 3), whereby water fills the cup. This causes the tube 30 to collapse over outlet pipe 18, and, as it does, the water in the tank flows through the tube and out of the tank through the outlet pipe 18.
When the tank 10 is empty, the water in the cup flows out of the cup through .the holes 68 and out of the outlet pipe. Then, as water flows into the tank 10 through the inlet pipe, both the buoyant force of .the water and the natural resiliency of the tube 30 cause the tube to expand and rise to its normal uprigh-t state, with the cover seating itself on the cup. The tank fills to its normal level just below the top of the cup, and the tank is ready for the nex-t flushing operation.
The flushing apparatus of the invention 26 may also be used to replace the ball 25 which is most usually em ployed to operate water inlet valve 24. For such a use as shown schematically in FIG. 5, the cup 50 is connected through a suitable coupling arrangement 150 to valve 24. The coupling arrangement 150 .permits the flushing mechanism `to Collapse and empty the tank 10, and, when the tank is filled and the cup 50 is raised to its maximum height, the valve 24 is closed and water stops flowing into the tank.
What is claimed is:
1. Tank flushing valve apparatus comprising an upright colla-psible tube adapted to be seated on and to communicate with the outlet from a tani( which contains a liquid, .a cup at the upper end of said tube, a cover coupled to but seated loosely on said cup,`operator means connected to said cover for raising it to permit fluid to fill said cup and Collapse said tube to permit the liquid in said tank to flow out of said outlet, said Valve apparatus being operated by manipulating said operator means ;and by thereby rotati-ng said cup and said cover, and
means in operative relation with said cup for limiting :the rototion of the cup while per-mithing rotation of the said aperture in said plate being defined by a wall which tapers downwardly and away from said rod, said rod being adapted to bear against said wall defining the aperture in said plate when said cup and cover are rotated and thereby to stop the rotation of the cup while permitting rotation of said cover to permit liquid to enter the cup and to cause 'a flushing operation to occur.
3. The apparatus defined in claim 1 wherein said cover has a central aperture, and including a vertical rod inside said tube and extending through said aperture in said cover to hold said cover loosely seated on said cup, 'and an apertured plate inside said tube, said rod passing through the aperture in said plate and adapted. to bear against said plate when said cup and cover are rotated, the pressure of *said rod on said plate limiting the rotation of the cup while permittng rotation of said cover to permit liquid to enter the cup and t-o cause a flushing operation to occur.
4. The apparatus defined in claim 1, and including means coupling said cover and said cup together as a unit and permitting said cover to occupy two positions, one in which it is in fluid tight engagement with said cup and one in which it is out of fluid tight engagement therewith whereby fluid can enter said cup and the valve 'apparatus can perform a flushing operation.
5. The apparatus defined in claim 1 wherein said cover includes an aperture to permit overflow water to enter said tube and to flow out of said tank through said outlet.
`6. The apparatus defined in claim 1 wherein said cover includes an aperture aligned with the passage through said tube to permit overflow water to enter said tube and to flow out of said tank through said outlet.
7. The apparatus defined in claim 1 and including a rod extending through said tube and holding said cover loosely seated on said cup, and a plate inside said tube adapted to be engaged by said rod when said cup and cover are rotated and adapted to limit the rotation of the cup while permitting rotation of said cover to permit liquid to enter the cup and cause a flushing operation to occur.
8. The apparatus defined in claim 1 wherein said cup includes a plurality of apertures which provide fluid conirunication between the cup and the tube so that fluid in the cup is free to 'flow into the tube and into the outlet pipe when the tube is collapsed.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 815,661 3/1906 Vissing 4-18 2,373,680 4/ 1945 Hawley 92-44 2,394,094 2/ 1946 Nichol 4-206 2,828,769 4/ 1958 Cooper 92-42 3,183,526 5/1965 Aaron 4-47 FOREIGN PATENTS 22l,881 6/ 1942 Switzerland.
LAVERNE D. GEIGER, Pr'ma'y Exam'nr.
. H. ARTIS, Exam'ner.