Water cooler abstract
An adaptor for converting a domestic bottle fed water cooler into
a device supplied from the local piping system. The adaptor comprises
a circular body attached to the bottle support ring of the cooling
unit and incorporates a float valve to maintain the water level
in the cooler constant. The connection between the water supply
piping system and the adaptor is made by a conduit incorporating
a filtering system.
Water cooler claims
1. An adaptor for converting a water cooler supplied with water
from a bottle having a neck, into a water cooler supplied with pressurized
water from a local piping system, said cooler supplied with water
from a bottle being of the commercially available type including
an annular seat defining an opening for receiving the neck of the
bottle placed in inverted position on said seat, and a cooled reservoir
having an upper, open end through which the neck of the bottle extends
to supply water into said reservoir, said adaptor comprising:
an annular body;
means for mounting said body on the annular seat of the cooler;
valve means mounted on the annular body and connected to the local
piping system for supplying water into the cooled reservoir, said
valve means comprising means for controlling a supply of water into
and a level of water in said reservoir, whereby sealing of the cooled
reservoir for converting the cooler from a bottle supply mode of
operation to a piping system supply mode of operation, is unnecessary.
2. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 wherein said controlling means
comprises a float valve operated by the level of water in said reservoir.
3. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 wherein said means for mounting
said body on the annular seat comprise a base ring having a lower
portion contoured to fit onto said annular seat and an upper portion
contoured to receive said annular body.
4. An adaptor as defined in claim 3 wherein said lower and upper
portions of the base ring are grooved.
5. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 wherein said annular body
is formed with a lower portion contoured to fit onto said annular
seat, said lower portion constituting said means for mounting said
body on the annular seat.
6. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 wherein said reservoir comprises
a generally cylindrical inner surface, and wherein said means for
mounting said body on the annular seat comprise a flat, generally
circular member including a generally circular score line whereby
said flat member can be fractured to adapt a diameter thereof to
that of the inner surface of the reservoir and to thereby enable
insertion of said circular member into said reservoir.
7. An adaptor as defined in claim 6 wherein said flat, generally
circular member comprises a plurality of generally circular score
8. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 wherein said means for mounting
said annular body on the annular seat comprise a generally circular
member mounted on said body and including at least one generally
circular score line to fracture said circular member.
9. An adaptor as defined in claim 1 and further comprising a lid
for covering said annular body.
10. An adaptor as defined in claim 9 wherein said lid comprises
a peripheral flange, and said annular body comprises an upper portion
which is grooved to receive said peripheral flange of the lid.
Water cooler description
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to the general field of water processing
and, more particularly, to an adaptor to convert a conventional
water cooler supplied from a bottle into a device fed from the water
supply piping of the dwelling. Advantageously, the adaptor is provided
with a filtration system.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
In the past recent years, many scientific studies have been published
clearly showing that the various chemical products added to the
drinking water supply for preventing bacteria growth may have adverse
effects on the human body. In addition, certain types of additives
such as those containing chlorine give an objectionable taste and
color to the water.
These reasons explain the increasing popularity of mineral drinking
water as a substitute for tap water. Mineral drinking water is commercially
available in disposable containers of various sizes or it may be
obtained from a supplier in large 18 liter money-back bottles designed
to be used exclusively with domestic water cooling units. Typically,
such water cooling devices are in the form of a cabinet with a support
fixture for the bottle in an inverted condition supplying water
by gravity to an internal reservoir cooled by a suitable refrigeration
system. Cool water is distributed from the internal reservoir through
a manually operated stop cock.
Although these bottle fed water coolers are convenient, they are
expensive to use on a long term basis considering the high costs
for the service to refill and deliver on site the water bottles.
OBJECT AND STATEMENT OF THE INVENTION
An object of the present invention is an adaptor to convert a domestic
bottle fed water cooler into a device supplied with pressurized
water from the local piping system.
Another object of the invention is an adaptor to convert a domestic
bottle fed water cooling unit into a device supplied with pressurized
water from the local piping system, with filtering capabilities
to purify the water.
According to one aspect of the invention, the adaptor comprises
a body mounted to the water cooler, provided with a conduit for
connection to a pressurized water supply, the conduit leading to
the receptacle of the water cooler normally used to receive the
neck of the bottle. A control valve is coupled to the conduit for
regulating the water flow. The valve is required because with the
adaptor the water supply pressure is considerably higher comparatively
to the bottle feeding system.
In a preferred embodiment, a simple float valve is used which maintains
the water level in the reservoir of the water cooler virtually constant.
Advantageously, a filtering device is mounted between the water
source and the adaptor to purify the water supplied to the cooler.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional bottle fed water
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the water cooler provided with
the adaptor in accordance with the invention;
FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the adaptor;
FIG. 4 is a vertical cross-sectional view of the adaptor shown
in FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a vertical cross-sectional view of a variant of the adaptor;
FIG. 6 is an enlarged view in section of a component of the adaptor
illustrated in FIG. 5.
DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
FIG. 1 of the annexed drawings, illustrates a conventional bottle
fed domestic water cooler 10 in the form of a generally rectangular
cabinet displaying front and rear vertical walls 12 and 14 and lateral
vertical walls 16 and 18. In a recess 20 formed on the front wall
12 is mounted a stop cock 22 to pour water. The stop cock 22 is
supplied with water from an 18 liter plastic bottle 24 resting in
an inverted position on a specially provided annular seat 26 formed
on the top surface of the water cooler 10 receiving the neck of
the bottle 24. The seat 26 is best illustrated in FIGS. 4 and 5.
The fluid path between the bottle 24 and the stop cock 22 includes
a reservoir cooled by a refrigeration system of conventional construction
FIGS. 2 and 3 illustrate an adaptor 28 to convert the bottle fed
cooling unit 10 into a device supplied with pressurized water from
the local piping system, thus eliminating the necessity of constantly
refilling the bottle 24 with water. Another advantage of the adaptor
is that it continuously supplies the cooling system with water and
there is no need to perform a bottle replacing operation as in a
conventional unit, which may be dangerous considering the weight
of a full bottle.
The adaptor 28 comprises an annular body 30 made of plastic or
other type material having the required rigidity and strength characteristics,
including a hollow radially extending projection 32. A relatively
short conduit 34 coupled to the projection 32 establishes a fluid
path between the hollow internal zone of the projection 32 and a
float valve 36. The latter is of a conventional construction and
comprises a valve seat and a plunger assembly (not shown) mounted
at the lower end of the conduit 34 the plunger being operated by
a float 38.
Water under pressure is supplied to the hollow internal region
of the projection 32 through a tapered inlet port 40 for accepting
a fitting 41 of conventional construction at the extremity of the
water supply pipe 43.
The upper extremity of the annular body 30 is provided with a circumferentially
extending groove 42 to accept a lid 44 which when closed prevents
dust or other foreign material to penetrate within the annular body
On the inner face of the annular body 30 at the lower end thereof,
is provided a circumferentially extending groove 46 which serves
to receive a base ring 48 to adapt the annular member 30 to various
sizes of bottle seats 26. The most popular diameters of bottle seats
are 6 61/4 61/2 63/4 and 7 inches. As the description proceeds,
it will become apparent how the adaptor may be modified for installation
on bottle supports of different diameters. The base ring 48 is made
preferably of the same material used for the construction of the
annular member 30 and it comprises circumferentially extending grooves
50 and 52 provided adjacent the top and bottom edges of the base
ring respectively, the groove 50 being substantially deeper than
the groove 52. The groove 52 is of the same depth as the grooves
42 and 46 on the member 30.
To permit a connection between the member 30 and the base ring
48 radially extending and tapped openings to accept set screws
are provided on the members 30 and 48 more particularly at overlapping
areas between these components when assembled together. The openings
are identified by the reference numeral 54. It should be appreciated
that the openings 54 also serve to receive set screws for attaching
the adaptor 28 to the bottle seat 26 as it will be described in
The operation of the device is as follows. When the adaptor 28
is to be installed on water coolers having a bottle support ring
with an internal diameter of 63/4 or 7 inches, the base ring 48
is not required for the installation. The annular body 30 whose
diameter is less than 63/4 of an inch is slipped within the bottle
support ring until the lower edge penetrates a certain distance
therein and four set screws are treaded in the openings 54 and tightened
to hold the annular member 30 securely in place. A conduit from
the local water supply piping system is connected to the inlet port
40. It will be appreciated that water will flow in the cooler 10
through the fluid path established by the hollow region of the extension
32 the conduit 34 and the float valve 36. As it is well known to
those skilled in the art, the latter will maintain a constant water
level in the cooler 10.
When the adaptor 28 is to be mounted on a water cooler with a bottle
support ring having a diameter of 6 1/2 inches, illustrated in dashed
lines by the numeral 26' in FIG. 4 the annular member 30 must be
employed with the base ring 48 in the position shown in FIG. 4.
The base ring 48 is slipped within the annular member 30 until the
horizontal surface defined by the groove 50 abuts against the horizontal
surface of the groove 46. Set screws are engaged in the openings
54 of the annular member 30 to retain both components together.
In that position, the assembly is slipped within the bottle support
ring 26' and secured by set screws as described earlier.
For a bottle support ring having a diameter of 6 inches or 61/4
shown by the reference numeral 26 in FIG. 4 the base ring 48 must
be used into an inverted position of what is shown in FIG. 4 in
other words the groove 52 will be on top. The mounting of the system
is the same as described earlier.
To purify the water supplied from the local piping system, it is
preferred to install upstream of the adaptor 28 a filtering device
(not shown). The type of filter used may vary in accordance with
the intended application. However, as an example only, water filters
commercialized under the trademark NSA have been found satisfactory.
Modifications are possible. Referring to FIG. 5 the adaptor 100
comprises a unitary annular member 102 provided with a conduit 104
carrying a float valve 106 at one end, the opposite end thereof
passing through the annular member 102 for connection to a water
supply pipe 108 by means of conventional fittings 110. The annular
member 102 includes a downwardly extending collar 112 slidingly
received into a vertically extending circular groove 114 of a base
ring 116 that serves to adapt the annular member 102 to various
diameters of bottle support rings illustrated in dashed lines by
the numerals 26 26', 26", 26'". The base ring 116 includes
a radially projecting flange 118 with three circular and concentric
score lines 120 best illustrated in FIG. 6.
A removable lid 122 is provided to close the annular member 102.
To install the adaptor 100 the collar 112 of the annular member
102 is inserted in the groove 114 of the base ring 116. If the assembly
is to be installed on a bottle support ring 26'", the base
ring 116 does not have to be modified. The assembly is inserted
in the bottle support ring until the annular member 102 is firmly
seated thereon. Finally, the water supply pipe 108 is connected
to the conduit 104 and the lid 122 is closed.
When the adaptor 100 is to be mounted on a smaller bottle support
ring, the diameter of the base ring 116 is reduced by sectioning
the flange 118 at the appropriate score line 120.
It should be understood that the above description of the preferred
embodiment of this invention should not be interpreted in any limiting
manner since various refinements are possible without departing
from the spirit of the invention. The scope of the invention is
defined in the annexed claims.