|Publication number||US3896641 A|
|Publication date||Jul 29, 1975|
|Filing date||Jul 30, 1973|
|Priority date||Jul 30, 1973|
|Publication number||US 3896641 A, US 3896641A, US-A-3896641, US3896641 A, US3896641A|
|Inventors||Worst Joseph C|
|Original Assignee||Gen Electric|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (6), Referenced by (14), Classifications (11)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent Worst July 29, 1975 15 1 COMBINATION LINT FILTER AND 3.455,456 7/1969 Wolters 68/18 F ADDITIVE DISPENSER FOR AUTOMATIC 3,757,543 9/1973 Braga 68/17 R WASHER Appl. No: 384,014
[52} US. Cl... 68/17 R; 68/18 F; 134/93; 134/104  Int. Cl. D06F 39/02; D06F 39/10  Field of Search 68/17 R, 18 F; 134/98, 134/104; 210/167, 407, 408, 413, 222/189  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,555,725 6/1951 Archbold 210/407 X 3.088.305 5/1963 Ohmann 68/17 R 3.219.192 11/1965 Trembath ct al. 210/167 X 3.353.681 11/1967 Silva 210/413 X Primary ExaminerEdward L. Roberts Assistant ExaminerC. K. Moore  ABSTRACT A combination lint filter and additive-dispenser is provided for an automatic washing machine and includes a receptacle having a plurality of chambers for receiving additives or treating agents. A lint filter in the form of a maze of vertical pins protruding from the base of the receptacle is provided with a stripping plate for the manual cleaning of the pins. The filterdispenser is provided with suitable connections to the recirculating water supply such that as the water enters the respective chambers, it flows through the maze of pins whereupon lint is trapped by these pins before the water re-enters the washing chamber of the machine. This same recirculating water flow also serves to flush out the additive or treating agent from the dispenser into the washing chamber.
5 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures PATENTED JUL 2 9 I975 SHEET F'IG.\
COMBINATION LINT FILTER AND ADDITIVE DISPENSER FOR AUTOMATIC WASHER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to an automatic clothes washing machine. and in particular, to a combination lint-filter. additive-dispenser in an automatic washing machine.
It is desirable, in an automatic washing machine. to provide means for the removal of lint from the liquid being recirculated within the machine. It is also desirable, with the provision in an automatic washer of a soak cycle or a first wash followed by a second wash cycle, to have a dispenser system which is capable of releasing additives or treating agents into the washing machine at prescribed times in the operation of these machines. The prior art teaches the use of pin type filtering elements placed in the recirculation flow of an automatic washing machine. Cleaning of such filtering elements has been accomplished by the use of perforated plates, the removal of the entire filter, and by backflushing a discharge flow through the filtering element. There has been, however, no provision of a suitable additive-dispensing device, operative after the starting of the cycle, which combines the function of filtering and removing lint from the recirculating flow of liquid in the washing machine.
It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a combination, lint-filter, additive-dispenser for an automatic washing machine and which provides means for easily cleaning and removing the entrapped lint from the filter element.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the present invention, a combination filter and additive-dispenser is provided for a washing machine of the type having a container for receiving items to be washed and further having means for recirculating liquid therein. lncluded is a receptacle having at least one chamber and arranged for receiving an additive to be introduced into the container and includes water diversion means including a conduit communicating the receptacle with the recirculation means and operable at predetermined times for causing recirculating liquid to flow into the receptacle for effecting transfer of the additive into the container. Filtration means is provided arranged in the receptacle for removing foreign material from the flow of recirculating liquid before the liquid re-enters the container and mechanical means is provided for manually cleaning the filtration means.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. I is a front elevational view. with portions broken away, of an automatic washing machine of the vertical axis type incorporating a preferred embodiment of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention showing the relationship thereof with the washing machine;
FIG. 3 is a view taken generally along the lines 33 of FIG. I and enlarged to better show details;
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view taken generally along the lines 4-4 of FIG. 3 to better reveal the association of the filter-dispenser of the present invention with its surroundings in the automatic washing machine.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to FIG. 1, there is shown a vertical agitator type automatic clothes washing machine 10 of the type having a container for receiving items to be washed and including outer tub 12, an imperforate structure, and suitably mounted therein a basket 14 for receiving soiled clothes. Basket 14 has its side and bottom walls provided with perforations. Tub 12 then serves as a liquid receptacle. the basket 14 and tub 12 together serving in effect as a container means for the clothes and liquid in which they are to be washed and rinsed.
The tub 12 is rigidly mounted with an appearance cabinet 16, which includes a cover 18 hingedly mounted upon a removable top portion 20 of the cabinet. When cover 18 is lifted, it provides access through an opening 22 to basket 14. The rigid mounting of tub 7 12 within cabinet 16 may be effected by any suitable means.
Mounted on the cabinet top 20 is a control panel 24 including sequence control means such as a cycle controlling timer device 28 which serves to conduct the washing machine 10 through various washing cycles which may be selected by the operator.
At the center of basket 14, there is positioned a vertical axis agitator 30 which includes a plurality of curved, water circulating vanes (not shown) joined at their lower ends by an outwardly flared skirt (also not shown). Both the clothes basket 14 and the agitator 30 are rotatably mounted. Rotational drive is translated to basket 14 and agitator 30 through a transmission 32 driven by an electric motor 34 connected thereto by suitable means. Details of constructional operation of such an automatic washing machine are fully disclosed in US. Pat. No. 3,248,912 John Bochan. assigned to the same assignee as the present invention.
In addition to operating transmission 32, motol" 34 also provides a direct drive through a flexible coupling 36 to liquid recirculation means such as the pump structure generally indicated at 40. Pump 40 has an inlet connected by a conduit 42 to the interior of tub 12 and an outlet connected by a conduit 44 to liquid flow diversion means such as fluidic switch 48. With such a structure, when the motor 34 is rotating so as to provide agitation, pump 40 draws liquid through conduit 42 from tub 12 and discharges it through conduit 44 through fluidic switch 48. Operation of this recirculation system will be discussed further herein.
Liquid supply means including valve assembly 54 is adapted to supply hot and cold water to the machine. the valve being connected respectively to hot and cold water sources. such as household faucets, (not shown) by a pair of conduits 56 and 58. Valve 54 may be provided with a pair of solenoids 60 and 62 such that the energization of solenoid 60 permits passage of hot water through the valve, and energization of solenoid 62 permits passage of cold water through the valve; likewise energization of both solenoids permits mixing of hot and cold water in the valve and passage of warm water therefrom through an outlet conduit 66 extending from the valve 54. Outlet conduit 66 communicates with a nozzle 68 which is positioned to discharge into basket I4.
In accordance with the present invention, there is provided a combination filter, additive-dispenser such as the lint-filter, additive-dispenser generally shown by the numeral 70. Filter-dispenser 70 has been arranged such that the flow of recirculating water emerging from outlet conduit 44 will flow therethrough so as to flush out an additive or treating agent placed therein by the operator. At the same time, that flow of water initially coming from tub 12 through inlet conduit 42, should be filtered before passing back into the container, and more specifically into basket 14, to remove lint and other foreign materials that may have been picked up or that may have been separated from the items of clothing being washed in the machine. Filter-dispenser 70 then also performs the function of entrapping this lint or other foreign material before the recirculation water passes back into basket 14.
Referring now to FIG. 2, filter-dispenser 70 is shown as being suitably attached to outer tub 12 near the top thereof such that the discharge therefrom passes into basket 14. A receptacle 72 is provided including a plurality of chambers such as first, second and third chambers, denoted as 74, 76 and 78, respectively for receiving an additive or treating agent such as a detergent which will be introduced into the washing machine at the appropriate time. As can be readily seen, the several chambers are substantially rectangular in shape, and formed of three side walls and a base member, one side wall being left substantially open such that the additive may be more easily flushed therefrom into the container or basket 14. Each of the chambers 74, 76 and 78 have been provided respectively with liquid inlets denoted respectively as 80, 82, and 84. Coupling the liquid inlets and thereby the three chambers into the liquid recirculation system are a set of three conduits 86, 88 and 90 respectively which are connected to fluidic switch 48. Fluidic switch 48, conduits 86, 88 and 90 and the recirculation system associated with the pump 40 constitute water diversion means, the fluidic switch being operable by the sequence control timer 28 to cause the recirculating liquid to flow into the respective chambers at predetermined times in the operation of the machine for effecting transfer of the additives or treating agents into the container. Such a liquid flow diversion means or fluidic switch may be of the type disclosed in US. Pat. No. 3,760,612 Akers et al, assigned to the same assignee as the present invention.
In the preferred embodiment as shown in FIG. 2, first chamber 74 would hold the pro-wash or soak cycle portion detergent, second chamber 76 would hold the wash or second wash detergent. and third chamber 78 would hold a rinse aid or agent. Accordingly, as timer 28 proceeds through the operating cycle, it would cause fiuidic switch 48 to become operable to allow rccirculating water to flow from conduit 44 through to the appropriate chambers as has been predetermined.
As can be seen in FIG. 3, cover means are provided for gaining access into the receptacle 72. Cover 92 is hingedly attached to receptacle 72 and in the preferred embodiment. cover 92 may be reached through an aperture 94 better seen in FIGv 4 in top portion of appearance cabinet 16.
Referring generally to FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, filtration means such as lint filter means denoted generally by the numerals 100 and 102 have been provided and arranged in receptacle 72 for removing foreign material such as lint from the flow of recirculating liquid entering the receptacle through inlets 80 and 82 before the liquid re-enters the basket 14. A lint filter means has not been provided in third chamber 78 since, in the preferred embodiment, this chamber holds the rinse agent and under normal operation of a washing machine, the flow of recirculating liquid is switched back by the timer device 28 and fluidic switch 48 to second chamber 76 a short time after the rinse agent has been dispensed.
Lint filters I00 and 102 include a plurality of generally parallel, spaced-apart pins, such as generally shown at 104, projecting from a substrate such as base members 106 and 108 respectively. In the preferred embodiment, pins 104 are arranged vertically so that incoming liquid from inlets and 82 will flow across the base members 106 and 108 and likewise through the maze or labyrinth of pins 104 before passing out of the respective chambers 74 and 76 into basket 14. Lint and other foreign material caught in the flow of recirculating liquid then is entrapped by these pins 104 thereby providing effective filtering for the recirculating flow of washing machine 10.
Means are also provided for manually cleaning the lint filter means such as mechanical cleaning means or stripping plates 110 and 112 associated with chambers 74 and 76 respectively. Stripping plates 110 and 112 are formed of rigid plates having a plurality of holes therein at least corresponding to the pins 104 of lint filters and 102. In the preferred embodiment these holes and pins are in a one to one ratio. there being one hole providing in the stripping plates and 112 for each of the pins 104. Plates I10 and 112 are normally superimposed over pins 104 such that they are in close proximityto the substrate or base members 106 and 108 from which pins 104 project. The normal operating position for plates 110 and 112 is in direct contact with base members 106 and 108 such that recirculating liquid does not flow therebetween, but rather the water flows over the top of stripping plates I10 and 112. Stripping plates 110 and 112 are each provided with gripping means such as handles 114 and 116. respectively, for allowing manual gripping thereof such that the plates 110 and 112 may be removed from their normal position. As the plates are pulled upwardly, foreign material such as lint entrapped upon pins 104 will be loosened therefrom so as to be effectively stripped, and retained on the plates. whereupon the lint may be easily removed as by rinsing under a faucet. Plates 110 and 112 are then again placed in their superimposed positions upon pins 104 and the lint filters 100 and 102 then are ready for another wash cycle. I
It has been found that filter-dispenser 70 may be integrally molded of one-piece construction of any suitable material, such as polypropylene. As such, liquid inlets 80. 82 and 84 as well as pins 104 and cover 92 may be molded as parts of the assembly; further cover 92 may be provided with a living hinge. Stripping plates 110 and 112 and the handles 114 and 116 may likewise be molded of one-piece construction.
It should be noted that pins 104. and their substrates or base members 106 and 108 may be formed of a single piece of pliable material such as rubber. the units being formed as inserts for insertion into chambers 74 and 76 respectively and further being suitably provided with handles for manual gripping such that manual removal of the assembly of base plate and pins causes the loosening from the pins of foreign materials such as lint trapped thereon which then may easily be plucked off manually or washed off in a stream of water.
It should be apparent to those skilled in the art that the embodiments described heretofore are considered to be the present preferred forms of this invention. In accordance with the Patent Statutes, changes may be made in the disclosed apparatus in the manner in which it is used without actually departing from the true spirit and scope of this invention.
What is claimed is:
1. In a washing machine having a container for recciving items to be washed and means for recirculating liquid therein, a combination filter, additivedispenser comprising:
a receptacle having at least one chamber and arranged for receiving an additive to be introduced into said container;
liquid diversion means including a conduit communicating the receptacle with said recirculation means and operable at predetermined times for causing at least a portion of the recirculating liquid to flow into the receptacle for effecting transfer of the additive into said container;
filtration means arranged in the receptacle for removing foreign material from the flow of recirculating liquid before said liquid re-enters said container. said filtration means comprising a plurality 'of generally parallel, spaced-apart pins projecting from a substrate arranged such that incoming recirculating liquid flows thereover; and
mechanical means for manually cleaning the filtration means comprising a rigid plate having a plurality of holes therein at least corresponding to the pins of the filtration means, the plate normally superimposed over said pins so as to be in close proximity to said substrate such that the incoming liquid flows over the plate. and means for manually gripping the plate, whereby it is removed from its normal position, foreign material removed by the pins from the flow of recirculating liquid will be stripped from the pins.
2. In an automatic clothes washing machine having a container for receiving clothes to be washed, an appearance cabinet including a top with a cover for gaining access into the container, means for recirculating liquid in the container, and sequence control means for controlling the operation of the machine, a combination lint filter-additive dispenser comprising:
a receptacle having a plurality of chambers, each chamber including a liquid inlet and at least three side walls and a base member, said chambers being adapted to receive an additive to be introduced into said container;
water diversion means including a fluidic switch and a plurality of conduits associated therewith communicating with the several receptacle chambers, the fluidic switch being operable by said sequence control means to cause recirculating liquid to flow into the respective chambers at predetermined times in the operation of the machine for effecting transfer of the additves into said container;
lint filter means including a plurality of vertical pins arranged in at least one of said chambers and secured to the base member thereof for entrapping lint and other foreign material from the flow of recirculating liquid before said liquid re-enters said container; and
a stripping plate having a plurality of holes therein at least corresponding to the pins of the filter means, the plate having a normal position in contact with the base member, and further having gripping means for removing the plate from its normal position whereupon as the plate is removed, lint and other material entrapped by the pins will be stripped therefrom.
3. The invention of claim 2 wherein said lint filteradditi've dispenser is adapted for mounting in said washing machine so as to be secured to said container at the top portion thereof, and further comprising cover means for gaining access into said receptacle.
4. The invention of claim 3 wherein access to said cover means is through an aperture in said appearance cabinet adjacent said access cover.
5. The invention of claim 4 wherein said receptacle includes three chambers, two of which are provided with lint filter means.
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|U.S. Classification||68/17.00R, 134/93, 134/104.4, 68/18.00F|
|International Classification||D06F39/00, D06F39/10, D06F39/02|
|Cooperative Classification||D06F39/02, D06F39/10|
|European Classification||D06F39/02, D06F39/10|