Easy To Use Patents Search & Patent Lawyer Directory

At Patents you can conduct a Patent Search, File a Patent Application, find a Patent Attorney, or search available technology through our Patent Exchange. Patents are available using simple keyword or date criteria. If you are looking to hire a patent attorney, you've come to the right place. Protect your idea and hire a patent lawyer.


Search All Patents:



  This Patent May Be For Sale or Lease. Contact Us

  Is This Your Patent? Claim This Patent Now.



Register or Login To Download This Patent As A PDF




United States Patent Application 20160289936
Kind Code A1
Horaites; George ;   et al. October 6, 2016

Universal Toilet Cistern

Abstract

A universal toilet cistern allows for the water supply inlet to be installed on either the right or left side of the tank. This is accomplished in various ways including, but not limited to, using punch-out supply inlet elements; making cisterns with multiple inlet openings that can be sealed during installation; utilizing multiple supply inlet valves; implementing a sliding seal; and/or using a reversible insert. The universal cistern is not only more efficient and convenient in that less plumping can be used, but it also improves the aesthetics of the installed product.


Inventors: Horaites; George; (Chicago, IL) ; Ottych; Filip; (Chicago, IL)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Horaites; George
Ottych; Filip

Chicago
Chicago

IL
IL

US
US
Family ID: 1000002020347
Appl. No.: 15/187760
Filed: June 20, 2016


Related U.S. Patent Documents

Application NumberFiling DatePatent Number
62182453Jun 20, 2015

Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: E03D 1/32 20130101; E03D 1/012 20130101
International Class: E03D 1/012 20060101 E03D001/012; E03D 1/32 20060101 E03D001/32

Claims



1. A universal toilet cistern comprising: a. a body; b. a right supply inlet element; c. a left supply inlet element; and d. a discharge outlet.

2. The universal toilet cistern of claim 1 wherein said left supply inlet element and said right supply inlet element are configured to be removable to create a left inlet opening and a right inlet opening respectively.

3. The universal toilet cistern of claim 2 wherein said left supply inlet element and said right supply inlet element are configured to be pushed out.

4. The universal toilet cistern of claim 1 wherein said right supply inlet element is rubber.

5. The universal toilet cistern of claim 1 wherein said right supply inlet element is porcelain.

6. A universal toilet cistern comprising: a. a body; b. a right inlet opening; c. a left inlet opening; and d. a discharge outlet.

7. The universal toilet cistern of claim 6 further comprising: e. a cap, wherein said cap is configured to seal at least one of said inlet openings.

8. The universal toilet cistern of claim 6 further comprising: e. a washer, wherein said washer is configured to seal at least one of said inlet openings; f. a bolt; and g. a nut.

9. The universal toilet cistern of claim 8 further comprising: h. a cap.

10. A universal toilet cistern comprising: a. a body; b. a reversible insert; c. an insert seal; and d. a discharge outlet.

11. The universal toilet cistern of claim 10 wherein said reversible insert comprises: i. a fitting surround a through-hole; and ii. an insert body, wherein said insert body can be rotated in said body of said toilet cistern.

12. The universal toilet cistern of claim 10 wherein said reversible insert is porcelain.

13. The universal toilet cistern of claim 10 wherein said insert seal is rubber.
Description



FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to toilets, and, in particular, to an adaptable arrangement of elements of a toilet cistern.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] FIG. 1 is an illustration of an example of a conventional toilet 100. Toilet 100 comprises toilet bowl 110 and cistern 120. In the example illustrated in FIG. 1, cistern 120 is mounted on toilet bowl 110. In other examples, cistern 120 can be mounted on a wall above toilet bowl 110 or on a pedestal (not shown in FIG. 1).

[0003] Cistern 120 comprises lid 125, a flushing mechanism (not visible in FIG. 1) and handle 130. The flushing mechanism can be operated by a handle such as handle 130, a push button or other suitable device. During a flush, water moves from cistern 120 to toilet bowl 100 via a discharge outlet (not shown in FIG. 1).

[0004] Cistern 120 comprises a supply inlet (not shown in FIG. 1). Supply piping 140 is plumbed to the supply inlet of cistern 120 and supplies water to cistern 120 via the supply inlet. Supply piping 140 can pass through an opening in a bathroom wall (as shown in FIG. 1) or a bathroom floor. As illustrated in FIG. 1, the supply inlet is located on the left-hand side of cistern 120, when viewed from the front (i.e., when viewed in the direction indicated by arrow V of FIG. 1).

[0005] FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram showing a cut-away view of an example of a cistern such as cistern 120 of FIG. 1. Cistern 120 comprises supply inlet 150 and discharge outlet 155. On the supply side, cistern 120 comprises interior supply pipe 160, float 162, inlet valve 164 and overflow tube 166. On the discharge side, cistern 120 comprises flush handle 130 and tank ball 135. In some examples, tank ball 135 can be replaced by a flapper.

[0006] Traditionally supply inlet 150 is found on the left-hand side of cistern 120, when viewed from the front (as shown in FIG. 1). In some applications this is disadvantageous, both practically and/or aesthetically. For example, if the toilet is on a left-sided wall when entering the room, supply piping 140 is readily visible. In other, or the same instances, additional supply piping 140 may have to be run to reach supply inlet 150.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] As discussed above, in some instances it is desirable to have the option for the supply inlet (such as supply inlet 150 of FIG. 2) to be located on the right-hand side of cistern 120, when viewed from the front. Furthermore, it can be desirable for the cistern to be configured such that the supply inlet can be located on either the left-hand side or the right-hand side of the cistern, as determined by an architect, a designer, an installer, a customer and the like.

[0008] A universal cistern is a cistern able to accept supply piping to a supply inlet on either the left-hand or right-hand side of the cistern. Benefits of a universal cistern include, but are not limited to, the following: [0009] Efficiency [0010] Reduced plumbing effort [0011] Reduced supply piping [0012] Convenience [0013] Practicality, for example if the supply piping is constrained by walls, other pipes and the like [0014] Flexibility [0015] Aesthetics

[0016] A universal toilet cistern can include a body, a right supply inlet element; a left supply inlet element; and a discharge outlet.

[0017] In some embodiments the left supply inlet element and the right supply inlet element are configured to be removable to create a left inlet opening and a right inlet opening respectfully. In certain embodiments the left supply inlet element and the right supply inlet element are configured to be pushed out. In the same or other embodiments the inlets can be made of rubber or porcelain.

[0018] In other embodiments, the universal toilet cistern can include a body, a right inlet opening, a left inlet opening; and a discharge outlet. The cistern can also include a cap and/or washer, wherein the cap and/or washer is configured to seal at least one of the inlet openings. A bolt and nut can also be used with the washer.

[0019] In other embodiments, the universal toilet cistern includes a body, a reversible insert, an insert seal, and a discharge outlet. The reversible insert can include a fitting surround a through-hole, and an insert body, wherein the insert body can be rotated in the body of the toilet cistern.

[0020] In other embodiments a universal toilet cistern can include a body, a right supply inlet valve, a left supply inlet valve; and a discharge outlet.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0021] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an example of a conventional toilet.

[0022] FIG. 2 is a perspective cutaway of a conventional cistern such as the cistern shown in FIG. 1.

[0023] FIG. 3A a schematic diagram showing a perspective view of a universal cistern.

[0024] FIG. 3B a schematic diagram showing a plan view of a universal cistern.

[0025] FIG. 3C is a schematic diagram showing a cross-section through line XX of FIG. 3B.

[0026] FIG. 4A is a schematic diagram showing a partial cross-section side elevation view of universal cistern 400

[0027] FIG. 4B is a schematic diagram showing a partial cross-section side elevation of universal cistern 400

[0028] FIG. 5A is schematic diagram showing a perspective view of reversible insert for an embodiment of a universal cistern.

[0029] FIG. 5B is a schematic diagram illustrating a universal cistern using the reversible insert shown in FIG. 5A.

[0030] FIG. 5C is a schematic diagram illustrating a universal cistern using the reversible insert shown in FIG. 5A, such that the insert is reversed when compared to FIG. 5B.

[0031] FIG. 6A and 6B are cross-sectional perspective views of a portion of a universal cistern.

[0032] FIG. 6C is a plan view of a universal cistern.

[0033] FIG. 6D is a perspective view of the universal cistern shown in FIG. 6C.

[0034] FIG. 7 is a schematic diagram showing a cross-sectional side-elevation of a universal cistern.

[0035] FIG. 8A is a schematic diagram showing a plan view of another embodiment of a universal cistern.

[0036] FIG. 8B is a schematic diagram showing a plan view of another embodiment of a universal cistern.

[0037] FIG. 9 is a schematic diagram showing a plan view of another embodiment of a universal cistern.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF CERTAIN EMBODIMENTS

[0038] FIG. 3A is a schematic diagram showing a perspective view of an example embodiment of universal cistern 300. Universal cistern 300 comprises cistern body 310, and optional supply inlets 320a and 320b on the left-hand and right-hand sides of cistern body 310 respectively. Cistern 300 further comprises discharge outlet 330.

[0039] FIG. 3B is a schematic diagram showing a plan view of cistern 300.

[0040] Optional supply inlets 320a and 320b each comprise an element that can be removed to create an inlet opening. For example, the element can be, among other things, pushed, punched, or screwed out to create an inlet opening.

[0041] For cistern 300 to be installed with a supply inlet on the left-hand side, the element of supply inlet 320a is removed to create the inlet opening. The corresponding element of supply inlet 320b is left in place.

[0042] For cistern 300 to be installed with a supply inlet on the right-hand side, the element of supply inlet 320b is removed to create the inlet opening. The corresponding element of supply inlet 320a is left in place.

[0043] FIG. 3C is a schematic diagram showing a cross-section through line XX of FIG. 3B. FIG. 3C shows element 325 of optional supply inlet 320a. Element 325 can be removed as described above to create the opening for supply inlet 320a. Element 325 can comprise porcelain, rubber, polymer, plastic or other suitable material.

[0044] In another embodiment, a universal cistern comprises two inlet openings, one inlet opening on the left-hand side of the cistern and the other inlet opening on the right-hand side of the cistern. When the toilet is installed, one of the two inlet openings can be used to accommodate the supply piping. The other inlet opening can be closed off, blocked, capped or otherwise sealed, for example as illustrated in FIGS. 4A and 4B.

[0045] FIG. 4A is a schematic diagram showing a partial cross-section through an example implementation of universal cistern 400a. Cistern 400a comprises cistern body 410 with inlet opening 415. Washer 430 is placed around inlet opening 415 and bolt 420 inserted through washer 430 into inlet opening 415. Nut 435 is threaded onto bolt thread 425 and used to secure bolt 420 tightly to washer 430 and cistern body 410. Washer 430 provides a seal to prevent water in cistern 400a escaping via inlet opening 415. Cap 440 can optionally be used to cover bolt thread 425. Cistern 400a comprises a second inlet opening (not shown in FIG. 4A) through which suitable supply plumbing can be installed to deliver water to universal cistern 400a.

[0046] FIG. 4B is a schematic diagram showing a partial side view of universal cistern 400b cut-away to illustrate another example implementation. Cistern 400b comprises body 410 with an inlet opening (not visible in FIG. 4B). Interior supply pipe 470 is held in place using bolt 450 and nut 465 threaded on bolt thread 455. Washer 460 provides a seal between bolt 450 and cistern body 410 to prevent water escaping through the inlet opening. The attachment of interior supply pipe 470 in this embodiment is the same or similar to the attachment of the interior supply pipe for an inlet opening used to supply water to cistern 400b. Interior supply pipe 470 is capped inside cistern body 410 using cap 475. Cap 475 prevents water from escaping cistern 400b through interior supply pipe 470 and the inlet opening. Cistern 400b comprises a second inlet opening (not shown in FIG. 4B) through which suitable supply plumbing can be installed to deliver water to universal cistern 400b.

[0047] In yet another embodiment, a cistern with a slotted inlet opening and a reversible insert can be used to provide universality of the cistern. FIG. 5A is a schematic diagram illustrating reversible insert 500a. Reversible insert 500a comprises a body 510 and a fitting 520 surrounding a through-hole in body 510. Supply plumbing can be attached to both sides of fitting 520. Body 510 can be rotated as indicated by arrow C in FIG. 5A, and can be positioned in a slot in the base of a universal cistern such that fitting 520 provides a supply inlet on either the left-hand or right-hand side of the cistern. In some embodiments, reversible insert 500a includes a rubber lip to create a watertight seal with the universal cistern.

[0048] FIG. 5B is a schematic diagram illustrating universal cistern 500b using a reversible insert such as reversible insert 500a of FIG. 5A to provide universality. Universal cistern 500b comprises cistern body 530, discharge outlet 540, and slotted inlet opening 550. Reversible insert 500a is installed in slotted inlet opening 550. In the example shown in FIG. 5B, the supply inlet is on the right-hand side of cistern 500b.

[0049] FIG. 5C is a schematic diagram illustrating universal cistern 500c using the technique described above in reference to FIGS. 5A and 5B. In FIG. 5C, reversible insert 500a is reversed, the supply inlet being on the left-hand side of cistern 500c.

[0050] Suitable seals and fastening mechanisms can be used to hold insert 500a securely in place so that water does not leak through slotted inlet opening 550.

[0051] In another implementation of the technique described above in reference to FIGS. 5A through 5C, slotted inlet opening 550 is replaced by two separate inlet openings, one on the left-hand side of cistern body 530 and the other on the right-hand side of cistern body 530. A reversible insert, similar to reversible insert 500a of FIG. 5A can be used to cover both of the two inlet openings, such that fitting 520 allows water to flow into the cistern through one of the two inlet openings, the other inlet opening closed off and sealed by body 510.

[0052] In yet another embodiment, a universal cistern again comprises two supply inlet openings, one on each side of the cistern. Each of the two supply inlet openings is fitted with a valve operable to open or close the inlet opening FIGS. 6A through 6D are schematic diagrams illustrating an example implementation of the use of valves at the supply inlets to provide universality.

[0053] FIGS. 6A and 6B both show a portion 600 of a universal cistern, portion 600 comprising cistern body 610, supply inlet opening 650a, and valve assembly 620a. Valve assembly 620a comprises valve body 630a, valve shutter 635a and pivot 640a. In FIG. 6A, valve shutter 635a has been rotated to the "open" position relative to valve body 630a about pivot 640a. Water can flow into cistern body 610 via supply inlet opening 650a using a fitted supply pipe (not shown in FIG. 6A). In FIG. 6B, valve shutter 635a has been rotated to the "closed" position relative to valve body 630a about pivot 640a. Water is prevented from flowing out of cistern body 610 via supply inlet opening 650a. In some embodiments, valve assembly 620 is a check valve that only allows water to flow into cistern body 600c.

[0054] FIG. 6C shows a plan view of cistern 600c comprising valves as described above in reference to FIGS. 6A and 6B. Cistern 600c comprises two supply inlet openings 650a and 650b, and discharge outlet 660. Valve assembly 620a is located at supply inlet opening 650a, and valve assembly 620b is located at supply inlet opening 650b. As shown, valve assembly 620a is in the "open" position to allow water to flow into cistern 600c via supply piping (not shown in FIG. 6C). As shown, valve assembly 620b is in the "closed" position.

[0055] Valve assemblies 620a and 620b can be operated, for example during installation of cistern 600c, to configure cistern 600c to accommodate supply piping to the left-hand or the right-hand side of cistern 600c.

[0056] FIG. 6D is an perspective view of cistern 600c.

[0057] In yet another embodiment using valves to provide universality of a toilet cistern, the valves can be incorporated in the interior supply piping above the supply inlet. FIG. 7 is a schematic diagram showing a side view of a cut-away of universal cistern 700 comprising valves incorporated in the interior supply piping.

[0058] Cistern 700 comprises body 710 and two supply inlet openings (not visible in FIG. 7). The hardware associated with the two supply inlet openings is the same as, or similar to, each other. The left-hand opening is fitted with hardware comprising bolt 720a (with thread 725a), washer 730a, nut 735a, interior supply pipe 740a, and valve 745a. The right-hand opening is fitted with hardware comprising bolt 720b (with thread 725b), washer 730b, nut 735b, interior supply pipe 740b, and valve 745b. Valves 745a and 745b can be ball type, globe type, butterfly, needle type or other suitable types of valve.

[0059] Valves 745a and 745b can be operated (i.e., opened and closed), for example during installation of cistern 700, to facilitate water to be supplied to cistern 700 via the left-hand or the right-hand supply inlet opening via interior supply pipe 740a or 740b, respectively.

[0060] In a further embodiment, a reversible cistern body can be used to provide universality of the cistern. FIGS. 8A and 8B are schematic plan views illustrating universal cistern 800 comprising cistern body 810, discharge outlet 820, and single supply inlet opening 830. Cistern body 810 is substantially symmetrical along its center-line, from front to back. Thus it can be mounted on or above a toilet bowl either with supply inlet opening 830 on the left-hand side as shown in FIG. 8A, or rotated 180 degrees so that supply inlet opening 830 is on the right-hand side as shown in FIG. 8B.

[0061] A flushing mechanism such as a button or handle (not shown in FIGS. 8A and 8B) can be mounted centrally on the lid of the cistern or on one of the sides, for example, so that it will be accessible with the cistern mounted either way round.

[0062] In a still further embodiment, a cistern body comprising a sliding seal mechanism can be used to provide universality of the cistern. FIG. 9 is a schematic plan view illustrating universal cistern 900 comprising cistern body 910 having discharge outlet 920, and two supply inlet openings 930a (not visible in FIGS. 9) and 930b. A sliding seal mechanism comprises a pair of parallel tracks 950 and 955 and sliding seal 940 that is slidingly engaged with tracks 950 and 955.

[0063] In the position illustrated in FIG. 9 sliding seal is located above left-hand side supply inlet 930a (which is hidden by sliding seal 940 in FIG. 9). In this position, sliding seal 940 blocks supply inlet 930a, and supply plumbing (not shown in FIG. 9) can be attached so that water is delivered to universal cistern 900 via right-hand side supply inlet 930b.

[0064] If desired, sliding seal 940 can be moved to the right so that it blocks supply inlet 930b, and the supply plumbing can be attached so that water is instead delivered to universal cistern 900 via the left-hand side supply inlet 930a.

[0065] The above described embodiments can be used individually or in various suitable combinations.

[0066] While particular elements, embodiments and applications of the present invention have been shown and described, it will be understood, that the invention is not limited thereto since modifications can be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the scope of the present disclosure, particularly in light of the foregoing teachings.

* * * * *

File A Patent Application

  • Protect your idea -- Don't let someone else file first. Learn more.

  • 3 Easy Steps -- Complete Form, application Review, and File. See our process.

  • Attorney Review -- Have your application reviewed by a Patent Attorney. See what's included.