US 3822571 A
A liquid diverter for use with an additive dispenser system of an automatic fabric washing machine. The diverter includes an inlet for receiving liquid and a pair of outlet nozzles one of which is disposed for normally delivering liquid into the machine tub during a fill operation, the other inlet being disposed to deliver liquid to a treating agent dispenser. The diverter is provided with valving means which, under control of the machine sequence controller, diverts the flow of liquid from the machine wash tub to the dispenser for flushing treating agent out of the dispenser.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Waugh 1451 July 9, 1974 LIQUID DIVERTER SYSTEM FOR AN AUTOMATIC WASHING MACHINE  Inventor: Richard A. Waugh, Louisville, Ky.
 Assignee: General Electric Company,
 Filed: Jan. 8, 1973 [2!] Appl. No.: 321,743
 US. Cl. 68/17 R, 68/207  Int. Cl. D06f 39/02 I  Field of Search 68/17 R, 207, 17 A;
 References Cited UNlTED STATES PATENTS 2,882,707 4/1959 Houser 3,248,912 5/1966 Bochan ..68/17A Primary Examiner- Harvey C. Hornsby Assistant ExaminerPhilip R. Coe
Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Frederick P. Weidner; Francis H. Boos 57] ABSTRACT A liquid diverter for use with an additive dispenser system of an automatic fabric washing machine. The diverter includes an inlet for receiving liquid and a pair of outlet nozzles one of which is disposed for normally delivering liquid into the machine tub during a fill operation, the other inlet being disposed to deliver liquid; to a treatingagent dispenser. The diverter is provided with valving means which, under control of the machine sequence controller, diverts the flow of liquid from the machine wash tub t0 the dispenser for flushing treating agent out of the dispenser.
5 Claims, 7 Drawing, Figures PATENTEU 9 SHEET 1 BF 2 BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to FIG. 1, there is shown therein an The present invention relates to automatic clothes agitator type clothes washing machine having a washing machines that proceed through a sequence of operations in order to wash and spin dry clothes. The sequence ordinarily includes a wash operation, a liquid extraction operation, a rinse operation, and a final extraction operation. Priorart machines have been provided with a second or optional wash cycle. In machines equipped with the optional wash cycles, provi-- sion has been made, as in US. Pat. No. 3,248,912 to John Bochan assigned to General Electric, assignee of the present invention, to insert a treating agent such as soap or detergent automatically during this second or subsequent wash. Prior art U.S. Pat. No. 2,882,707 shows a diverter system for permitting the flow of fill water. into a treating agent dispenser at predetermined times in a machines cycle of operation.
It is an object of this invention to provide a new and improved liquid diverter which, at a predetermined time in an automatic washing machine cycle, may be actuated to divert substantially all of the liquid fill from its normal flow into the machines wash tub and direct it into the dispenser for dispensing treating agent for use in the second or optional wash. I I
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The diverter is provided with two outlets, the first of which directs water tangentially into a filter ring located adjacent the upper periphery of the automatic washer tub, and the second of which directs fluid to an additive dispenser-container. A ,valve is included in the channel leading to the second outlet and, in the closed position, blocks the flow of liquid to the second outlet such that it is normally delivered through the first outlet and into the wash basket. The valve may be actuated at a predetermined time in a washing cycle to permit flow of liquid through the second outlet and into the additive dispenser-container. Provision is made in the diverter to insure that any liquid that may leak through the closed valve is drained from the diverter and does not reach the second outlet and dispense the additive before the desired point in the washing cycle.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a top plan view of an automatic clothes washing machine incorporating one embodiment of this invention, with portions broken away to illustrate this invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary, side elevational view taken along the line. 2-2 in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary, side elevational view taken along the line 3-3 in FIG. 1 showing the diverter gate in the closed position;
FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIG. 3 showing the diverter gate in the open position; I
FIG. 5 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken along the line 5-5 of FIG. 2, showing details of thediverter inlet employed in the. illustrated form of the present invention} FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken along the line 6-6 in FIG. 5 showing details of the diverter inlet; and
FIG. 7 is a view of the diverter with the top wall removed to show the inside configuration.
closed position. At the center of the basket there is positioned a vertical axis agitator 17..The details of construction of such an automatic washing machine are, further disclosed in hereinbefore mentioned US. Pat. No. 3,248,912 to John Bochan.
The liquid to be supplied to the basket 11 for collection in the outer tub 12 for washing clothes is supplied through a liquid waterinlet body 18. The water inlet body 18 communicates with the inlet of a diverter 1.9 which is provided with an inlet area 20 and two outlet channels 21 and 22. Channel 21 is provided with a downwardly directed opening 23 which is disposed to normally direct a stream of fluid tangentially along the surface of a filter ring 24 arranged over the basket 11, while the second channel 22 terminates at an outlet 26. The outlet 26 is disposed to communicate with an inlet opening 27 of a dispenser 28 which may be used with the illustrated embodiment of the diverter system of the present invention. The diverter 19 and its operation for diverting fluid from outlet 23 to the outlet 26 will hereinafter be described in detail. Mounted on the cabinet 13 is a control compartment 29 in which are located control devices, including a conventional cycle control- Ier 31 which conducts the washing machine and the diverterl9 through a cycle of operation.
The water inlet body.18 may be of the type having'a suds trap and an air gap to prevent siphoning of the wash water back into the water supply system. The water inlet body 18 (FIG. 2) includes an extension or hose 32 terminating in a flange 33 which is secured to the outer tub 12. The diverter 19 is secured to the outer tub 12 by way of an integral flange 34 which is in regislightweight plastic material such that it is desirable to provide a weight 36 on the upper surface thereof to maintain it in the closed position. The gate 34 is provided at its upper end with stub shafts 3.4a, one of which is shown in FIG. 4, that project outwardly from each end. The stub shafts are pivotally received in notches in the side wall of the channel 22. One of the stub shafts is provided with a crank arm 37 which is located outside of the channel and is rotated to open and close the gate 34. Rotation of the crank arm 37 in the clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 4, will cause the gate 34 to open. The gate 34 in its closed, normal position seals against shoulders 38 formed along the bottom and side walls of the channel 22. This sealing action is facilitated by the water pressure in the direction of the arrow in FIG. 3 against the closed gate during the initial fill operation of the machine. The top portion or edge of the gate 34 is located adjacent a flange 40 formed on and projecting downwardly from the upper wall of the channel 22. This close relationship of flange 40 with the upper edge of gate 34 forms a relatively effective seal against water leaking past the closed gate. However, provision is made in the present embodiment to bleed off any water that may flow past the closed gate 34 to prevent it from prematurely entering the dispenser 27. To this end an opening 39 is provided in the bottom wall of the channel 22 downstream of the gate 34 through which water leaking past gate 34 may drain intothe basket 11. Located along the upstream edge of the opening 39 is a raised portion or dam 41 which interrupts the flow of water in the event the water getting past the closed gate has a velocity great enough to skip over the opening 39.
Referring now to FIGS. 5 and 6, which shows the inlet area 20 of the diverter, there is located, across the lower wall of the diverter adjacent the inlet opening, a drain hole 42. As seen in FIG. 6,v the diverter inlet opening is below the level of the bottom wall of the channels 21, 22 and gate 34 so that when the flow of water into the diverter 19 stops, the water effectively drains out of the diverter through drain hole 42 and into the outer tub l2 and is thereby prevented from flowing back into the water inlet 18.
In the event of low water pressure, means are provided to insure an adequate flow of water out of outlet 26 when the gate 34 is open. The means in the present embodiment for insuring that a sufficient flow of water is directed to the outlet 26, is a curved wall 43 (FIG. 7). The wall 43 is located in the inlet area 20 and is in the path of water entering the diverter inlet so as to bias the flow and cause most of the water to flow through the channel 22 and into the dispenser.
The crank arm 37 of the diverter is operated by a pivotally arranged arm 44 which is actuated by a solenoid 46. The armature of solenoid 46 is biased to its extended position by a spring 47 to hold arm 44 away from crank arm 37. Referring to FIG. 3, energization of the solenoid 46 actuates arm 44 to be pivoted counterclockwise, or in the downward direction as viewed in FIG. 3. The downward movements of the arm 44 causes it to engage the crank arm 37 and rotate it in the clockwise direction to open the gate 34 as shown in FIG. 4.
Briefly reviewing the manner of operation of the additive dispensing system during the first wash or cycle when water is being provided to the wash tub 11 through the diverter outlet opening 23, the solenoid 46 remains de-energized and the gate 34 is closed to block the flow of water through outlet 26 of channel 27 thus causing the water to flow through outlet 23 of channel 21 and into the tub 11. In this manner treating agent stored in the dispenser 28 remains therein during the first wash cycle.
When it is desired to provide liquid to the dispenser 28 to insert treating agent into the wash water at the beginning of the second or optional wash cycle, the solenoid 46, under influence of the controller 31, is energized to pivot the arm 44 to engage arm 37 and rotate the gate 34 to its open position. With the gate 34 open, theflow of water through outlet 26 of channel 22 is directed into the dispenser 28 to flush out any treating agent placed therein into the wash basket 11.
In operation, the user of the machine may place treating agent into the basket with the clothes to be washed during the initial wash or soak cycle, or may wish to merely soak the clothes and temporarily terminate the machines cycle for predetermined soak time or in some machines of up to ten hours. As explained above, the solenoid 46 is energized to cause a flow of water to dispense treating agent from the dispenser during the second or optional wash cycle. It will be obvious, however, that if it is desired to insert treating agent into the clothes basket during the initial fill cycle, the solenoid may be programmed to be energized during that time.
While there has been shown and described a specific embodiment of the present invention, this invention is not limited thereto and it is intended by the appended claims to cover all modifications falling within the true spirit and scope of this invention.
What is claimed as new and desired to be secured by letters Patent of the United States is: I
1. An automatic washing machine of the type having a tub to receive liquid from a fill means and clothes to be washed, a treating agent dispenser, and a diverter for directing liquid from said fill means to said tub and to said dispenser comprising:
an inlet area in said diverter for receiving liquid from said machine fill means;
a channel in said diverter having an outlet arranged for normally delivering liquid from said inlet area to said tub;
a second channel in said diverter having an opening arranged to communicate with an inlet opening in said dispenser;
valve means located in said second channel between said diverter inlet area and said opening for normally preventing the flowof liquid through said second channel and into said dispenser inlet;
actuating means under control of said automatic washing machine for opening said valve means at predetermined times in said automatic machine cycle.
2. An automatic washing machine of claim 1 wherein biasing means is located in said diverter inlet area in the path of liquid entering said inlet area for diverting a majority of said liquid flow through said second channel and into said dispenser inlet when said valve means is in an open position.
3. An automatic washing machine of claim 1 wherein said diverter includes a drain means downstream of said valve means for draining liquid that may leak past said valve means when said valve means is in a closed position to prevent premature dispensing of treating agent in said dispenser.
4. An automatic washing machine of claim 3 wherein said drain means includes'an aperture on the bottom wall of said second channel and a dam along the upstream edge of said aperture for interrupting and preventing the flow of leakage liquid from bridging said aperture and reaching said dispenser inlet.
5. An automatic washing machine of claim 3, wherein said diverter includes a second drain means in said inlet area for draining liquid from said diverter when said liquid flow into said diverter terminates.