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Publication numberUS3882637 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 13, 1975
Filing dateNov 12, 1973
Priority dateNov 12, 1973
Also published asCA1029075A1
Publication numberUS 3882637 A, US 3882637A, US-A-3882637, US3882637 A, US3882637A
InventorsRobert E Lindenschmidt
Original AssigneeWhirlpool Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Refrigerator door construction and method of forming the same
US 3882637 A
Abstract
An insulated door construction such as for use as a refrigerator door having an inner liner secured to an outer panel by a snap-in association. A gasket is secured to the door by a portion of the snap-in retaining structure eliminating the need for screws and gasket retainers. The door is reinforced by corner brackets and cross braces. The brackets may be used to position the liner relative to the outer panel where the insulation in the door is relatively soft insulation, such as fiberglass insulation.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [1 1 Lindenschmidt [451 May 13, 1975 1 REFRIGERATOR DOOR CONSTRUCTION AND METHOD OF FORMING THE SAME [75] Inventor:

[73] Assignee:

[22] Filed:

Robert E. Lindenschmidt, Evansville, Ind.

Whirlpool Corporation, Benton Harbor, Mich.

Nov. 12, 1973 21 Appl. No.; 414,864

[52] US. Cl. 49/501; 49/489; 52/619 [51] Int. Cl E06b 3/00 [58] Field of Search 49/475, 486, 487, 489,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,848,715 3/1932 Hart et al 52/619 2,036,781 4/1936 Steenstrup 49/486 2,507,305 5/1950 Jacobs 59/486 2,579,157 12/1951 Price, Sr. et a1. 52/619 2,612,661 10/1952 Semple 52/615 2,620,520 12/1952 Kafer 49/486 3,113,401 12/1963 Rose 52/615 X FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 931,172 7/1963 United Kingdom 49/486 Primary Examiner-Philip C. Kannan Attorney, Agent, or Firm-I-Iofgren, Wegner, Allen, Stellman & McCord [57] 5 ABSTRACT An insulated door construction such as for use as a refrigerator door having an inner liner secured to an outer panel by a snap-in association. A gasket is secured to the door by a portion of the snap-in retaining structure eliminating the need for screws and gasket retainers. The door is reinforced by corner brackets and cross braces. The brackets may be used to position the liner relative to the outer panel where the insulation in the door is relatively soft insulation, such as fiberglass insulation.

19 Claims, 12 Drawing Figures REFRIGERATOR DOOR CONSTRUCTION AND METHOD OF FORMING THE SAME BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to cabinet constructions, and in particular to insulated door constructions such as for use as refrigerator doors.

2. Description of the Prior Art In one conventional form of refrigerator door, a body of insulating material, such as foamed plastic, is disposed between an outer painted steel panel and an inner plastic liner. A gasket is mounted to the door to extend around the inner periphery thereof for sealing the door to the body of the refrigerator cabinet across the front opening thereof.

In conventional insulated door constructions of this type, screws and other securing means are employed for retaining the door elements in assembled relationship. One example of a door assembly of the prior art is that shown in U.S. Pat. No. 2,707,808 of F. B. Anderson et al. An evaporator door assembly is disclosed having inner and outer door panels with a bodyof insulation disposed therebetween with connecting means at the edges of the outer panel and inner panel engageable by movement of each inner panel part relative to the outer panel.

In U.S. Pat. No. 3,097,030 of R. L. Hartley, a closure door for a bread box is shown utilizing a snap-in inner door panel.

In U.S. Pat. No. 3,403,477 of J. W. Light, a door construction is shown having a panel welded to the outer door panel for receiving a gasket in the peripheral edge of the liner.

In U.S. Pat. No. 3,286,424 of R. G. Weyant, a door construction is shown having internal braces to insure desired alignment of the door parts.

In U.S. Pat. No. 3,179,987 of C. Banzet, a flexible door seal is disclosed comprising a gasket carried by connecting means separate from the outer panel and liner.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention comprehends an improved insulated door construction and method of forming the same wherein an inner liner is retained in association with an outer panel by a snap-in association. The door construction includes a body of insulating material between the inner liner and outer panel effectively supporting the liner in position in the snap-in arrangement.

The snap-in means provided in the door construction further serves to retain a sealing gasket at the periphery of the door, thereby further minimizing the cost of con- 1 struction.

More specifically, the invention comprehends providing an insulated door construction including an outer panel having an inturned peripheral flange means defining an insulation space adjacent the panel, insulation within the space, means on the flange defining a retaining shoulder overlying a peripheral portion of the space, an inner liner having a resilient peripheral lip portion resiliently snapped under the shoulder, the inner liner covering the first space and retained in place by the snapped under relationship with the shoulder, and door gasket means retained by the shoulder for sealing the liner to the outer panel.

The liner lip portion may be pressed into the insulation in one form of the invention. In another form, the insulation is formed with an inwardly opening recess for receiving the lip portion of the liner.

The lip portion of the liner defines a channel which receives a mounting portion of the sealing gasket and which supports the mounting portion of the gasket in retained association with the retaining shoulder of the outer panel whereby the retaining shoulder serves not only to retain the liner but also the sealing gasket.

The distal portion of the liner lip may extend angularly outwardly so as to permit flexing thereof for facilitated snapped-under association with the outer panel shoulder.

Bracket means may be provided at the corners of the door construction for retaining the liner lip portion in snapped-under association with the outer panel shoulder such as where the insulation material is a relatively soft material, such as fiberglass material. The brackets further may be interconnected by suitable cross braces for rigidifying the door construction.

The corners of the liner may be notched to permit flexing of the adjoining sides concurrently for facilitated installation of the liner in the snap-under operation.

The invention further comprehends the improved method of constructing a refrigerator door including the steps of providing an outer panel having an inturned peripheral flange defining an insulation space, and shoulder means inturned from the flange to overlie a peripheral portion of the space filling the insulation space with insulation, providing an inner liner with a resilient peripheral lip portion, pressing the lip portion into the insulation under the shoulder to retain the inner liner to the outer panel, and installing a door gasket having a portion extending between the lip portion and the shoulder to seal between the inner liner and outer panel.

As indicated above, the insulation may be preformed with a recess for receiving the liner lip portion or, alternatively, the liner lip portion may be pressed into the insulation as by the use of a suitable presser element such as a ram.

The liner panel may be secured to the insulation as by the provision of adhesive means therebetween for further improved retained assembly of the door construction.

Thus, the insulated door construction of the present invention is extremely simple and economical of construction while yet providing the highly desirable advantages discussed above.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING Other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an upright refrigeration apparatus having a door construction embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a chest-type freezer refrigeration apparatus having a door construction embodying the invention;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary horizontal section taken substantially along the line 33 of FIG. 1 illustrating the association of the outer panel, insulation, inner liner, and gasket at the periphery of the door construction;

FIG. 4 is afragmentary section illustrating an intermediate step in the construction of the insulated door;

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary section illustrating a subsequent step in the construction of the insulated door;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary section illustrating the first step in a modified door construction utilizing a fiberglass pad insulation;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary section illustrating a subsequent step in a modified door construction utilizing a fiberglass pad insulation;

FIG. 8 is afragmentary section illustratinganother modified method of forming the door construction wherein the liner lip portion is pressed into the insulation;

FIG. 9 is a section illustrating another modified form of door construction embodying the invention utilizing bracket means at the corner of the door construction taken substantially along the line 9-9 of FIG. 10;

FIG. 10 is a fragmentary plan view thereof;

FIG. 11 is a fragmentary plan view of the liner illustrating a notched corner construction thereof; and

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary plan view ofa liner utilizing a modified form of notched corner construction.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In the exemplary embodiment of the invention as disclosed in the drawing, a door construction generally designated 10 is shown to comprise an insulated door such as for use in an upright refrigeration apparatus, such as freezer 11. As shown in FIG. 2, the door construction 10 may be similarly utilized in connection with a chest-type refrigeration apparatus such aschest freezer 12.

Door construction 10 as shown in FIG. 3 includes an outer panel 13, which may comprise a conventional painted steel panel having an outer face portion 14 provided with an inturned peripheral flange 15 defining an insulation space 16. Insulation 17 may be provided in space 16, and in the illustrated embodiment of FIG. 3, comprises foamed-in-place insulation.

Means defining a retaining shoulder 18 are provided on flange 15 and in the illustrated embodiment, comprise a turned distal portion of flange l5 overlying the periphery of space 16 adjacentflange 15.

An inner liner 19 extends across the inner surface 20 of insulation 17 and includes a resilient peripheral lip portion 21 resiliently snapped under shoulder 18 for retaining the liner in place in the door construction.

As shown in FIG. 4, insulation 17 may be provided with a recess 22 adaptedto receive the lip portion 21 of liner 19 when the lip portion is urged past the shoulder 18 as by a suitable presser ram 23 to a snapped-in arrangement, as shown in FIG. 5. As best seen in FIG. 4, liner lip portion 21 includes an outturned flange portion 27 and a reversely turned outwardly angled distal portion 28 cooperatively defining channel 26. Flexing of distal portion 28 at the outer end of flange 21 permits the snapping in of the lip portion 28 under shoulder 18, as shown in FIG. 5.

A sealing gasket 24 having a mounting portion 25 may be installed in the door construction as shown in FIG. 3. By inserting the mounting portion 25 into the outwardly opening channel 26 defined by liner lip portion 21 whereby gasket mounting portion 25 is similarly retained by a snapped-in association with shoulder 18.

As illustrated in FIG. 3, gasket 24 may comprisev a,

magnetic gasket, although as will be obvioustothose skilled in the art, any suitable gasket may be employed as desired.

Further, to provide augmented securing of the liner, 19 in the door construction, adhesive 29 may be uti-.

lized between the panel and inner surface20 of insulation 17. 7 Thus, the liner 19 is installed in association with th outer panel 13 and insulation 17 without the need for screws or other fasteners and similarly, the gasket 24 is installed in the door construction without the need for screws or other fasterners, thereby providing an extremely simple and low cost door construction.

Referring to FIGS. 6 and 7, a modified form of door I construction utilizing fiberglass insulation in lieu of foamed-in-place insulation of doorconstruction 10, is shown to be generally similar to door construction 10 except that the lip portion 121 of liner 119 is easily pressed into the fiberglass insulation 130. This allows a relatively flexible door for use with the chesttype freezer of FIG. 2 wherein the door can easily con-' form to the top opening by' flexing due to its own weight.

As illustrated in FIG. 8, a further modified form of. door construction generally designated 210 is shown to' be generally similar to doorconstruction 10 except that the foam insulation 217 is not provided with the recess 7 22. In this form of door construction, the liner lip por'-. tion 22 is pressed into the foam insulation 217 by the presser ram 223.

As illustrated in FIGS. 11 and 12, the liner may be; r provided at the corners 31 with suitable notches, such I as notch 32 illustrated in FIG. 11 and notch 33 as illustrated in FIG. 12, to permit the distal portion .28 at each side of corner 31 to be flexed concurrently in the insta llation of the liner by the snap-in action under shoulder As further illustrated in FIGS. 9 and 10, a bracket 34 may be utilized adjacent the corner 31 ofthe liner, such as where the relatively soft fiberglass insulation 130 is .1

utilized. As shown in FIG. 9, channel 35. receives the mounting portion 25 of the gasket 24 for providing improved retention of the gasket. The brackets 34 may be interconnected by suitable cross braces 36 for further rigidifying the door. The cross braces may be secured to the brackets by suitable means, such as: screws 37, with the liner being provided with a suitable opening 38 to provide access to the screws therethrough at the corner portions. 31 as shown. The. use of the cross braces;

36 provides more stability in the door structure and increased strength for improved support of shelves 39 on the liner, as shown in FIG. 1. Further, the cross braces provide an adjustment ofthe door structure to. assure proper sealing of the gasket to the front wall 40 of the The foregoing disclosure of specific embodiments is illustrative of the broad inventive concepts compre-" hended by the invention.

What is claimed is: 1. An insulated door construction comprising; an outer panel having an inturnedperipheral flange means defining an insulation space adjacent said panel; insulation within said space; means on said flange defining a retaining shoulder overlying a peripheral portion of said space; an inner liner having a resilient peripheral lip portion defining an inwardly opening channel resiliently snapped under said shoulder, said inner liner covering said first space and retained in place by said snapped under relationship with said shoulder, said channel being disposed adjacent said shoulder; and door gasket means having a portion received in said channel with an edge thereof underlying said shoulder to be retained by said shoulder for sealing said liner to said outer panel.

2. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said liner lip portion is pressed into said insulation.

3. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said liner lip portion comprises an outturned flange portion having a reversely turned distal portion engaging said shoulder.

4. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said liner lip portion comprises an outturned flange portion having a reversely turned distal portion engaging said shoulder, said lip portion flange portion and distal portion defining a channel structure projecting outwardly into said insulation and inwardly defining said channel.

5. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said liner lip portion comprises an outturned flange portion having a reversely turned distal portion engaging said shoulder, said lip portion flange portion and distal portion defining a channel structure projecting outwardly into said insulation.

6. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said insulation comprises foamed-implace insulation.

7. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said insulation comprises fiberous insulation.

8. The insulated door construction of claim 1 wherein said liner lip portion comprises an outturned flange portion having a reversely turned distal portion engaging said shoulder, said reversely turned distal portion comprising a flat wall extending angularly toward said shoulder from the outer end of said liner outward flange portion.

9. An insulated door construction comprising: an outer panel having an inturned peripheral flange means defining an insulation space adjacent said panel, said panel defining a rectangular door means having four corners; insulation within said space; means on said flange defining a retaining shoulder overlying the peripheral portion of said space; an inner liner having a resilient peripheral lip portion defining an inwardly opening channel resiliently snapped under said shoulder, said inner liner covering said first space and retained in place by said snapped under relationship with said shoulder, said channel being disposed adjacent said shoulder; and door gasket means having a portion received in said channel with an edge thereof underlying said shoulder to be retained by said shoulder for sealing said liner to said outer panel; and bracket means disposed at each of said door means corners defining means for retaining said liner lip portion in snapped under relationship with said shoulder.

10. The insulated door construction of claim 9 wherein said bracket means extend inwardly of said insulation and include an edge portion underlying said retaining shoulder.

11. The insulated door construction of claim 9 wherein said bracket means defines inwardly opening recesses receiving a portion of said door gasket means and retaining said portion in underlying, retained association with said shoulder means.

12. The insulated door construction of claim 9 wherein cross braces are connected between said bracket means for further rigidifying said door construction.

13. The insulated door construction of claim 9 wherein cross braces are adjustably connected between said bracket means for further rigidifying said door construction.

14. The insulated door construction of claim 9 wherein said inner liner defines corner portions provided with notches extending inwardly through said lip portion to permit concurrent flexing of adjacent side portions of said liner for facilitated snapping-under installation.

15. The method of constructing a refrigerator door comprising the steps of: providing an outer panel having an inturned peripheral flange defining an insulation space and shoulder means inturned from said flange to overlie a peripheral portion of said space; filling said insulated space with insulation; providing an inner liner with a resilient peripheral lip portion defining an inwardly opening channel; pressing said lip portion into said insulation under said shoulder to retain said inner liner to said outer panel and with said channel exposed adjacent said shoulder means; and installing a door gasket in said channel, said gasket having a portion extending between said lip portion and said shoulder to seal between said inner liner and outer panel.

16. The method of constructing a refrigerator door of claim 15 further including the step of preforming a recess in said insulation for receiving said liner lip portion.

17. The method of constructing a refrigerator door of claim 15 further including the step of providing adhesive means between said inner liner and insulation.

18. The method of constructing a refrigerator door of claim 15 further including the step of notching the corners of said liner to permit flexing of the lip portion along the intersecting edges of the liner adjacent the corners.

19. The method of constructing a refrigerator door of claim 15 wherein said insulation is yieldable and said lip portion is forced into the insulation by a pressure element.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4306379 *Feb 29, 1980Dec 22, 1981Whirlpool CorporationRefrigerator door construction and method of assembly
US4496201 *Jul 23, 1982Jan 29, 1985Umc Industries, Inc.Closure such as a glass door for a refrigeration or freezer
US4653819 *May 30, 1985Mar 31, 1987General Electric CompanyRefrigerator cabinet and gasket construction
US4808457 *Aug 19, 1986Feb 28, 1989Whirlpool CorporationHeavy gas-filled multilayer insulation panels
US4862577 *Jul 21, 1988Sep 5, 1989Whirlpool CorporationMethod of making a refrigerator cabinet
US4959111 *Nov 4, 1988Sep 25, 1990Whirlpool CorporationHeavy gas-filled multilayer insulation panels and method of manufacture thereof
US5085021 *Feb 23, 1989Feb 4, 1992Saint-Gobain VitrageAutomobile glass pane having elastic sealing profile
US5184869 *May 13, 1992Feb 9, 1993Karosseriewerke Weinsberg GmbhElevatable sliding roof of flat design
US5228240 *Jan 28, 1992Jul 20, 19932420 Door Co.Refrigerator door assembly and method
US5367831 *Sep 13, 1993Nov 29, 1994The Standard Products CompanyFlush mount magnetic header seal
US5461831 *Dec 29, 1993Oct 31, 1995Eastman Kodak CompanyAssemblage and method for relieving overpressure in an enclosure
US5533311 *Sep 30, 1994Jul 9, 1996Maytag CorporationThermoformed plastic refrigerator door
US5716581 *Apr 24, 1996Feb 10, 1998Maytag CorporationMethod of thermoforming a plastic refrigerator door
US5759591 *Jun 28, 1996Jun 2, 1998Maytag CorporationApparatus for thermoforming a plastic appliance door
US5909937 *Jan 15, 1997Jun 8, 1999General Electric CompanyRefrigerator door assembly
US6138432 *Nov 25, 1998Oct 31, 2000Camco Inc.Refrigerator door construction
US6148563 *Mar 25, 1999Nov 21, 2000Hussmann CorporationReach-in door for refrigerated merchandiser
US6187252Feb 2, 1998Feb 13, 2001Maytag CorporationMethod of thermoforming a plastic appliance door
US6393768Sep 29, 2000May 28, 2002Hussmann CorporationMethod of making reach-in door for refrigerated merchandiser
US6401399Sep 29, 2000Jun 11, 2002Hussmann CorporationReach-in refrigerated merchandiser
US6505442Sep 27, 2001Jan 14, 2003Camco Inc.Thermal and reinforced refrigerator door
US6630097 *Nov 30, 1999Oct 7, 2003Whirlpool CorporationMethod for constructing a bent-edge plastic door for a household electrical appliance
US6679006Oct 4, 2002Jan 20, 2004Camco Inc.Thermal and reinforced refrigerator door
US7051490 *May 3, 2001May 30, 2006Mitsubishi Denki Kabushiki KaishaDoor for refrigerator and method of producing the door for refrigerator
US7140159Mar 12, 2003Nov 28, 2006Maytag CorporationPush-in refrigerator door seal and retainer system
US8230647 *May 4, 2006Jul 31, 2012Lg Electronics Inc.Door assembly for refrigerator
US20100187241 *Jun 12, 2008Jul 29, 2010BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbHHeat-insulating wall for a refrigerating device
CN101680703BMay 14, 2008Feb 1, 2012Bsh博世和西门子家用器具有限公司家用电器
DE3525538A1 *Jul 17, 1985Jan 29, 1987Bosch Siemens HausgeraeteDoor provided with a seal, in particular heat-insulated door lined on both sides for refrigerators and the like
EP0162344A2 *Apr 29, 1985Nov 27, 1985INDUSTRIE ZANUSSI S.p.A.Door for a refrigerator
WO2008141995A2May 14, 2008Nov 27, 2008Bsh Bosch Siemens HausgeraeteDomestic appliance
Classifications
U.S. Classification49/501, 52/784.13, 49/489.1, 52/DIG.400, 29/460, 29/451, 49/478.1
International ClassificationF25D23/06, F25D23/08, F25D23/02
Cooperative ClassificationF25D23/02, F25D23/087, F25D2400/10, Y10S52/04, F25D23/066, F25D2201/126
European ClassificationF25D23/08B2, F25D23/02