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Publication numberUS3884418 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 20, 1975
Filing dateAug 30, 1974
Priority dateAug 30, 1974
Also published asCA1020203A, CA1020203A1, DE2525814A1, DE2525814B2
Publication numberUS 3884418 A, US 3884418A, US-A-3884418, US3884418 A, US3884418A
InventorsRichard L Ritzenthaler, Thomas J Wilcox
Original AssigneeCranda Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Aerating and spraying attachment for faucets
US 3884418 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Pate Ritzenthaler et a1.

[ 1 May 20, 1975 1 AERATING AND SPRAYING ATTACHMENT FOR FAUCETS [75] Inventors: Richard L. Ritzenthaler, Crystal Lake, 111.; Thomas J. Wilcox, East Troy, Wis.

Primary Examiner-Lloyd L. King Attorney, Agent, or FirmEdward U. Dithmar [5 7] ABSTRACT An aerating and spraying attachment for faucets employing a resilient diaphragm which in undeformed state places the parts in aerating position and which in deformed state (pulled down manually) places the parts in spraying position. During spraying operation, back pressure within the attachment holds the diaphragm deformed, and when the water is turned off at the faucet, the back pressure drops and the resilience of the diaphragm returns the diaphragm to undeformed state, so when the water next is turned on, the attachment is in aerating position. Alternatively, reversion to aerating position may be accomplished manually without difficulty if desired, regardless of excessive line pressure. The aerating features of the attachment are conventional, and novelty in the attachment is predicated on features involved in the spraying operation.

The attachment functions properly at line pressures falling over a wide range, for example, from low pressures of about 10-20 pounds per square inch to high pressures of about 125-140 pounds per square inch. The present attachment employs a so-called restrictive cup which cooperates with the diaphragm to define a chamber in which the effect of back pressure is substantially independent of line pressure, the back pressure effect being sufficient to maintain the diaphragm in deformed state for the spray position. At high line pressures, further diaphragm deformation occurs to enlarge the areas of discharge from this chamber, thereby limiting the back pressure so the attachment may be reverted manually from spraying position to aerating position without difficulty, The restrictive cup also cooperates to permit the area of the spray openings to be of such size that the spray is substantially splashless at the higher pressures.

4 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures AERATING AND SPRAYING ATTACHMENT FOR FAUCETS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION particularly a resilient diaphragm and parts that cooperate to aerate the water stream. The device of the patent, however. has certain shortcomings in connection with spraying operation, and these shortcomings are overcome in applicants attachment.

The device of the patent seemingly is capable of proper operation at comparatively low line pressures. However, the device either may not work properly at higher line pressures, or the operation is somewhat different than at the lower pressures. Applicant's attachment, as will be seen, works properly at all anticipated pressures from low to high.

The device of the patent cited above is believed to produce a spray that splashes objectionably at high line pressures. As to the forms shown in FIGS. 1-10 of the patent. it is believed that levers or the like such as shown in FIGS. 11-17 are necessary at high pressures to revert from spraying position to aerating position when the water is running. In some embodiments, it is necessary to have the lever arrangements for reverting even when the water is not running. It is desirable to be able to perform this reversion manually without levers when the water is running, and for the device to revert automatically when the water is turned off.

An object of the present invention is to provide an aerating and spraying attachment for faucets which is capable of proper, uniform operation regardless of the magnitude of line pressure.

Another object is to provide such an attachment which will produce a splashless spray at high pressures.

Another object is to provide such an attachment whereby even at low line pressure there will be sufficient back pressure to maintain spraying position.

A further object is to provide such an attachment that will avoid excessive back pressure at high line pressures whereby the attachment may be reverted manually from spraying position to aerating position without difficulty and without the use of levers or the like.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention contemplates an aerating and spraying attachment for faucets which is operable at high water pressure without objectionable spray splash and with out requiring excessive force in manually reverting from spraying position to aerating position, and operable at low water pressures to maintain spraying position.

The invention comprises a faucet-attachable stem member having a longitudinal opening for the flow of water, a splash plate on the end of the stern member for receiving water flow, and an inverted cup-shaped resilient casing member on the stem member above the splash plate, the casing member having a diaphragm portion and a peripheral skirt portion. An annular spray body member has a peripheral wall secured to the aforesaid peripheral skirt portion, the spray body member also having spray apertures, a central tubular portion foran aerated water stream and a conical inner wall in effective relation with the splash plate.

The resilient casing member and the spray body member enclose 'an annular chamber communicating with the spray apertures of the body member.

An important feature of the attachment is a so-called restrictive cup on the spray body member, the cup having a peripheral wall normally engaging the diaphragm portion of the resilient casing member and dividing the aforesaid annular chamber into upper and lower chamber portions. The restrictive cup has spaced flow openings of comparatively small total size leading from the upper chamber portion to the lower chamber portion.

The diaphragm portion of the resilient casing member is deformed manually for spraying position, causing sealing engagement between the conical inner wall of the spray body member and the splash plate, and thus water flow into the upper chamber portion and thence to the lower chamber portion and the spray apertures. The flow openings in the restrictive cup provide proper back pressure effect at low line pressure to maintain the diaphragm portion in deformed condition. Higher line pressures cause the diaphragm portion to separate from the peripheral wall of the restrictive cup, thus increasing the flow area and maintaining the effect of back pressure in the upper chamber portion substantially constant so as to permit manual reversionto aerating position without difficulty. The effective area of the spray apertures is such as to deliver splashless spray at higher line pressures.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is an elevational view of an aerating and spraying attachment for faucets embodying the invention.

FIG. 2 is a bottom view of the attachment shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged longitudinal sectional view of the aerating and spraying attachment, the viewing showing the movable parts in aerating position.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged sectional view comparable to DESCRIFTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawing, FIGS. 1 and 2 in the original, unreduced drawing show a commercial version of an aerating and spraying attachment l0 embodying the invention in substantially full size. The remaining Figures in the drawing are enlarged for clarity.

Most kitchen faucets with which the present aerating and spraying attachment 10 is used are threaded either externally or internally at the end of the spout. Attachment 10, as shown, includes a mounting nut 11 adapted to engage external spout threads. A conventional adapter (not shown) is employed for mounting the attachment on internal spout threads.

Referring particularly to FIG. 3, which shows attachment in aerating position, attachment 10 includes a stem member having a longitudinal opening 16 for the passage of water from an associated faucet. The illustrated version of attachment 10 has a swivel mounting formed by'a ball-shaped segment 17 at the upper end of stem member 15 and an annular curved cooperating inner wall 18 of mounting nut 11. Suitable conventional sealing means are used to prevent leakage at the swivel mounting.

Longitudinalopening 16 in stem member 15 terminatesnear the lower end of the member, and bottom 19 of the opening has a ring of longitudinal apertures 20 for passing water to the interior of attachment 10.

Stem member 15, as shown, has a reduced lower end portion 21, and an annular splash plate 22 is mounted thereon. The upper surface of splash plate 22 has a portion, collinear with apertures 20 and a radially outer surface 23,of. conical shape. Conical surface 23 is one wall of an annular water passage 24 when attachment 10 is inaerating position and one part of a closure valve when'the attachment is in spraying position, as will be seen from a comparison of FIGS. 3 and 4, the latter Fig ure showing the parts in spraying position.

Continuing with the description of FIG. 3, attachment 10 includes an inverted cup-shaped casing member 25 of resilient material such as rubber or rubberlike plastic material. Casing member 25 has a central opening and theportion around the opening is sealed to stem member 15 at 26. Resilient casing member 25 has a central-diaphragm portion 27 and a peripheral skirt portion 28. Diaphragm portion 27, as will be seen, is the element in attachment 10 that resiliently flexes and deforms, and thereafter recovers, in altering the location of various parts as between aerating and spraying positions.

' 1 Attachment'IO also includes an annular spray body member 30 of irregular shape. For the most part, spray body member 30 is disposed Within inverted cupshaped' resilient casing member 25. Spray body member 30 has a peripheral wall 31 secured to peripheral skirt portion 28 of casing member 25, and a central generally tubular portion 32 defining a central opening 33 for an aerated water stream, the tubular portion 32 for the most part being spaced inwardly from peripheral wall 31.

An annular web 34 connects tubular portion 32 and peripheral wall 31, and this web 34 has a ring of spray apertures 35 adjacent peripheral wall 31. When the attachment is in spraying position, .water exits from apertures 35 in the form of spray, and when in aerating position, spray apertures 35 furnish air for aerating the water stream through central opening 33, as will be seen.

The central tubular portion 33 of spray body member 30 has an inner conical wall 37 in effective relation with conical surface 23 of splash plate 22. Conical wall 37 when attachment 10 is in aerating position constitutes part of the outer wall of the annular water passage upstream of aforesaid passage 24, and when in spraying position cooperates with conical surface 23 to provide a closure valve, as shown in FIG. 4.

When attachment 10 is in aerating position, annular passage 24 between the periphery of splash plate 22 and the adjacent tubular portion 32 of spray body member 30 has less effective area than is provided by the passage upstream, meaning that reduced passage 24 constitutes a venturi. The water'-velocity increases through passage 24 and creates a reduced pressure condition causing air to enter spray apertures 35 and reach the water stream, as shown by the arrows on the left side of FIG. 3.

Still referring to FIG. 3, the upper end of central tubular portion 32 of spray body member 30 has a plurality of bosses 38, two of which are shown in FIG. 3, the bosses 38 engaging inner portions of resilient casing member 25 when attachment 10 is in aerating position. The spaces between bosses 38 are paths for the air from spray apertures 35 on the way to mixture with the water stream in annular passage 24.

Primary aeration of the water stream occurs in annular passage 24, and a screen 40 at the lower end of tubular portion 32 of spray body member 30 cooperates to form and smooth the exit stream andcomplete the aeration provided by attachment 10.

As will be seen in FIG. 3, inverted cup-shaped resilient casing 25 and tubular portion 32 of spray body member 30 cooperate to enclose an annular chamber 45 of substantial size, the annular chamber communicating with spray apertures 35. As mentioned above, when attachment 10 is in aerating position, aerating air enters spray apertures 35 and flows through chamber 45 and the spaces between bosses 38 to annular passage 24 where the air thoroughly is mixed with the water, serving in the process to break up the water into small droplets.

The above described parts of attachment 10 cooperate to provide desired aeration of the water regardless of the line pressure of the water flowing from the faucet. As previously mentioned, line pressures vary over a wide range, some water systems at various times, depending in part on load, having a low line pressure of the order of 10 to 20 pounds per square inch. Other water systems at various times, again depending to some extent on load, have line pressures of the order of to pounds per square inch. It is desirable that an aerating and spraying attachment of the present type be workable at any line pressure falling within the wide range of pressure possibilities.

Line pressure, while not a serious factor with attachment 10 in aerating position, is a severe factor in proper operation in spraying position, as will be seen.

In spraying position, the high line pressures tend to cause undesirable splash of the spray streams which exist through spray apertures 35. One way to effset the tendency to splash is to make the apertures of larger area. However, if the area is excessive, the water in chamber 45 at lower line pressures fails to develop the back pressure required to maintain the deformation imparted to cup-shaped resilient casing member 25 when shifted into the spraying position (FIG. 4). Regardless of the size of spray apertures 35, small or large, line pressures at the high end of the range generate so much back pressure on diaphragm portion 27 of resilient casing member 25 that it is difficult if not impossible to revert from spraying position to aerating position manually. This is a distinct disadvantage in devices of this type, inasmuch as the ability to revert manually is a highly desirable feature.

The present invention solves these heretofore unsolved problems by employing a so-called restrictive cup 50 disposed in annular chamber 45. A perspective view of restrictive cup 50 is shown in FIG. 6.

RestrictivecupSQ is located at the upper end of tubular portion;32 of=spray body member 30. As shown, cup 50 has an imperforat'e bottom 51 andla peripheral wall 52. The upper edge of peripheral wall 52 has a plurality ofsrnall slots 53, the slots 53 being four in .number in the cup shown in FIG. 6. The effective area of each slot-53 is comparatively small, the precise size being determined by the amount of water flow required at low line pressure-to provideadequate spray andat the sametime sufficient back pressure to maintain diaphragmportion 27 of resilient casing member 25 deformed or flexed when attachment is in spraying position. Alternatively, in lieu of slots 53, apertures of the sametotal 'size may be provided in cup bottom 51.

Referring. to FIG. 4, attachment 10 is shown in spraying position. In shifting from the aerating position of FIG. 3 to spraying position of FIG. 4, certain parts of attachment 10 are moved manually downward. The part of attachment 10 to be engaged manually is casing retainer 55, an exterior ring which clamps peripheral skirt portion 28 of resilient casing member 25 to peripheral wall 31 of spray body member 30.

When casing retainer 55 is pulled downwardly, diaphragm portion 27 of resilient casing member 25 is deformed and flexed downwardly, as shown in FIG. 4, compared with the shape of diaphragm portion 27 in FIG. 3. This movement, of course, changes the relation between various other parts of attachment 10.

Interior conical wall 37 of tubular portion 32 of spray body member 30 is moved downwardly into engage-.1

ment with the conical surface 23 of splash plate 22, thereby closing the water passage upstream of reduced passage 24. The engagement between wall 37 and surface 23 is shown in FIG. 4. The lowering of spray body member 30 causes separation of bosses 38 from the inner part of easing member 25 and enlarges the passageway previously existing between those parts.

Incoming water from longitudinal apertures 20 in stem member no longer flows around splash plate 22, as it did when attachment 10 was in aerating position, but rather flows radially outward and fills annular chamber 45.

Restrictive cup 50, previously described, divides annular chamber 45 into two chamber portions, namely an upper chamber portion 60 and a lower chamber 61. These two chamber portions cooperate with restrictive cup 50 to make attachment 10 work properly in spray position, regardless of the value ofline pressure. As will be seen, the effective back pressure applied to diaphragm portion 27 of resilient casing member 25 is developed almost entirely in upper chamber portion 60, and is not dependent to significant extent on the size of spray apertures 35.

When the line pressure is comparatively low, the manual shift to spraying position does not cause separation between diaphragm portion 27 and the upper edge of wall 52 of restrictive cup 50. Portion 27 is shown separated from wall 52 in FIG. 4, but this is a condition occurring only at comparatively high line pressures.

phragm portion 27 of resilient casing member 25 and the upper edge of wall 52 of restrictive cup 50 when in spraying position is shown in FIG. 5.

When the line pressure is low or moderate, diaphragm portion 27, despite flexure, stays in engagement with the edge of wall 52 (FIG. 5), the slots 53 or equivalent providing the only water outlet from upper ,6O The engaged relationship at low pressures between diachamberportion 60.. This reduced outlet causes development of sufficient effective back pressure in the water in upper chamber portio rij6f) to maintain the deformed condition of diaphragm portion 27, the water ,flow through slots 53 being sufficient however, even at low line pressure, to establish desired spray thro ugh spray apertures 35.

When comparatively high line pressure is e ncounr tered, the effective back pressure developed in upper chamber portion is larger, causinggreaterdistortion in diaphragm portion 27 of resilient ca sing mfimbe r 25. and consequent separation of portion 27 from upper edge of wall 52 of restrictive cup 50. This separapresent, permitting attachment 10 to be reverted manually to aerating position without difficulty. The number and size of spray apertures 35, of course, are suitable for splashless spray even at the higher pressures and flow volumes.

Restrictive cup 50 in effect functions with diaphragm portion 27 to compensate for variations in line pressure, particularly at the higher line pressures, and provide a more or less uniform effective back pressure that permits manual reversion without undue difficulty, and without levers or the like.

From the above description, it is thought that the construction and advantages of this invention will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art. Various changes in detail may be made without departing from the spirit or losing the advantages of the invention.

Having thus described the invention, what is claimed as new and desired to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. An aerating and spraying attachment for faucets operable at high water pressures without objectionable spray splash and without requiring excessive force in manually reverting from spraying position to aerating position and operable at low water pressures to maintain spraying position, comprising:

a faucet-attachable stem member having a longitudinal opening for the flow of water;

a splash plate on the end of said stem member for receiving water flow; a resilient casing member on said stem member above said splash plate, said casing member having a diaphragm portion and a peripheral skirt portion;

an annular spray body member having a peripheral wall secured to said peripheral skirt portion, said spray body member having spray apertures, a central tubular portion for an aerated water stream and an inner wall for sealing with said splash plate;

said resilient casing member and said spray body member enclosing an annular chamber communicating with said spray apertures; and

a restrictive cup on said spray body member, said restrictive cup having a peripheral wall normally engaging said diaphragm portion and dividing said annular chamber into upper and lower chamber portions, said restrictive cup having flow openings of comparatively small total size leading from said upper chamber portion to said lower chamber portion;

said diaphragm portion deformable for spraying position to establish sealing engagement between said splash plate and said inner wall of said body member and water flow into said upper chamber portion and thence to said lower chamber portion and said 3. The aerating and spraying attachment of claim I spray apertures, said flow openings in said restricwherein in aerating position aerating air enters the attive cup providing proper effective back pressures tachment through said spray apertures and flows at low line pressures to maintain said diaphragm through said flow openings in said restrictive cup and portion in deformed condition, high line pressures 5 the upper end of said tubular portion of said spray body causing said diaphragm portion to separate from member to the water stream in said tubular portion.

said peripheral wall of said restrictive cup, thus in- 4. The aerating and spraying attachment of claim 1 creasing the flow area and maintaining the effecwherein the back pressureof the water in said upper tive back pressures substantially constant so as to chamber portion enclosed by said diaphragm portion permit manual reversion to aerating position withand said restrictive cup is so distributed between diaout difficulty, the effective area of said spray aper phragm portion and cup that the force required for tures such as to deliver splashless spray at high line manual reversion from spraying position to aerating popressures. sition is substantially constant regardless of line pres- 2. The aerating and spraying attachment of claim 1 sure, whereby in effect said restrictive cup cooperates wherein said flow openings in said restrictive cup are 5 to compensate for variations in line pressure.

slots in the upper edge of the peripheral cup wall.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3334818 *Sep 22, 1965Aug 8, 1967Alfred M MoenSwivel spray aerators
US3524591 *Aug 2, 1968Aug 18, 1970Chicago Specialty Mfg CoSpray device for showers,faucets,and the like
US3706418 *Aug 26, 1971Dec 19, 1972Hyde Robert WAerator
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4072270 *Aug 23, 1976Feb 7, 1978Harmony Emitter Company, Inc.Shower head aerator
US4322292 *Jan 2, 1981Mar 30, 1982RjdAerator
US5154355 *Jul 31, 1991Oct 13, 1992Emhart Inc.Flow booster apparatus
US5348231 *Oct 5, 1993Sep 20, 1994Arnold Don CTwo-stage aerator
US6557785 *Nov 15, 1999May 6, 2003Masco CorporationShowerhead for delivering an aerated water stream by use of the venturi effect
US7017837 *Nov 5, 2002Mar 28, 2006Toto Ltd.Water discharge switching device
US8800892 *Sep 1, 2009Aug 12, 2014Klaus PrenzlerRegulating device for a water outflow, particularly from sanitary fittings
US9545184Aug 24, 2011Jan 17, 2017Xiamen Solex High-Tech Industries Co., Ltd.Rich air sprayer of sanitary ware
US20050001064 *Nov 5, 2002Jan 6, 2005Youjirou TaketomiWater discharge switching device
US20060219822 *Mar 15, 2006Oct 5, 2006Alsons CorporationDual volume shower head system
US20110303309 *Sep 1, 2009Dec 15, 2011Klaus PrenzlerRegulating device for a water outflow, particularly from sanitary fittings
EP0190965A1 *Jan 24, 1986Aug 13, 1986LES ROBINETS PRESTO Société anonyme dite:Device for mounting an aerator in the discharge nozzle of a water tap
EP1134025A3 *Aug 14, 2000Sep 10, 2003SIROFLEX S.r.l.Control ring for the adjustment of the direction and the shape of the jet of a jet deflector or of a shower head with aerator
EP1443151A1 *Nov 5, 2002Aug 4, 2004Toto Ltd.Water discharge switching device
EP1443151A4 *Nov 5, 2002Dec 10, 2008Toto LtdWater discharge switching device
WO2012025047A1 *Aug 24, 2011Mar 1, 2012厦门松霖科技有限公司Aerating spray component for use in field of shower
Classifications
U.S. Classification239/428.5
International ClassificationE03C1/084
Cooperative ClassificationE03C1/084, E03C2001/082
European ClassificationE03C1/084