Water dispenser abstract
A water dispenser for dispensing bottled water with the water bottle
installed into the bottom portion of a dispenser cabinet with the
water bottle's open end up, thereby eliminating the need to lift
the water bottle to the top of the cabinet and the need to invert
the bottle so that its open end points down.
Water dispenser claims
What is claimed is:
1. A water dispenser for use with a water container or water bottle,
said water dispenser comprising:
A water dispenser cabinet of sufficient size to contain the water
bottle, said water bottle positioned inside of the cabinet with
the bottle's open end up, said cabinet further containing a pumping
device, a pulley, and a flexible absorption tube with a first end
and a second end, said absorption tube partially wound around the
pulley, said pulley providing a means for inserting the first end
of said tube into the open end of the water bottle and a means for
retracting the tube from the bottle, said tube's first end containing
a sealing cap providing a means for sealing the water bottle's open
end when the tube is fully inserted into the bottle, said tube's
second end flexibly attached to solid pumping device providing a
means for pumping water out of the bottle and into a water tank,
said water tank connected to means for dispensing water to a user.
2. The water dispenser of claim 1 further comprising a moveable
cart assembly providing a means for holding the water bottle with
its open end up and a means for pulling the water bottle out of
the cabinet and pushing the bottle into the cabinet.
3. The water dispenser of claim 2 in which the water tank and dispensing
means comprise a hot water tank and a cold water tank, each tank
provided with a means for respectively heating and cooling the water
and a means for dispensing the hot and cold water.
4. The water dispenser of claim 3 in which the cooling means comprises
a thermo-electric module, a cooling pin, a first and a second heat
sink, and a fan.
5. The water dispenser of claim 4 in which the heating means comprises
an electric die casting heater and a thermostat.
6. The water dispenser of claim 5 further containing an operation
switch which electrically controls a forward and reverse turning
motor which is axially connected to the pulley.
7. The water dispenser of claim 6 further containing a forward
micro-switch and a reverse micro-switch providing the means for
controlling the absorption tube's vertical movement.
8. The water dispenser of claim 7 further containing a pair of
float sensors providing a first means for sending a signal to the
pumping device to cause it to pump water until the hot and cold
water tanks are full, a second means for sensing that the water
level in each tank has fallen below a certain pre-set value indicating
that the water bottle is empty, and a third means for activating
a melody alarm to warn the user that the water bottle is empty.
9. The water dispenser as recited in claim 8 in which the first
means for sending a signal to the pumping device further comprises
a delay means to delay pump activation of the pumping device for
a pre-determined time interval.
Water dispenser description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
This invention relates generally to hot and cold water dispensers,
and more specifically to an improved hot and cold water dispenser
which allows the user to install a water container or water bottle
into the bottom portion of a dispenser cabinet, rather than on top
of the cabinet.
2. Description of the Prior Art
The demand for bottled mineral water has increased over the last
several years. This demand has most likely increased due to the
public's awareness of impurities in the public water supply. As
a result of this increased demand, water dispensers have been introduced
into the market place to enable users to obtain hot and cold water
from a single five gallon bottle. To date these conventional water
dispensers have adopted the same cooling method utilized in refrigerators
and freezers in which a compressor condenses Freon gas, or other
similar CFC gas, which circulates in cooling coils in order to cool
the water. Due to the space requirements of the condenser and coiling
coils, conventional water dispensers have located the cooling apparatus
in the water dispenser's cabinet, leaving no room for the water
bottle. Thus, these conventional dispensers are designed such that
the water bottle must be placed on top of the water cabinet, rather
than inside of the cabinet. As a result, many potential users, especially
senior citizens, are reluctant to make use of this type of water
dispenser because the five gallon water bottle is too heavy to lift
up to the top of the cabinet. In addition to this difficulty, since
the water bottle must be placed on top of the cabinet with the bottle's
open end down, it is inevitable that water will occasionally spill
onto the cabinet and floor. This conventional design also does not
provide any means for sealing the open water bottle in order to
prevent contamination. Moreover, other sanitary problems may arise
because the user must grab the open end of the water bottle when
placing the bottle upside down on top of the cabinet. In addition
to these inconveniences and sanitary problems, CFC gases are known
to be contributors to the depletion of the ozone layer in the earth's
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The present invention provides a water dispenser which is easier
to use than a conventional dispenser because the invention permits
the user to install a heavy five gallon water bottle into the bottom
portion of the dispenser's cabinet, rather than on top of the cabinet.
The invention is more sanitary than a conventional water dispenser
because the invention allows the water bottle to be installed with
its open end up, thus eliminating spilling, and when in operation,
the water bottle's opening is sealed to prevent contamination from
the environment. The invention has the further advantage in that
it cools the water without using CFC gases which are known to deplete
the atmosphere's ozone layer.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the front portion of this invention,
illustrating that hot and cold water dispensers are located near
the top of a water dispenser cabinet, and that a water bottle, obscured
from view within the cabinet, is located in the bottom portion of
the cabinet and FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the rear portion
of this invention.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the invention, which illustrates
the arrangement of the invention's interior elements as viewed from
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the invention, which illustrates
the invention's interior elements as viewed from the side.
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of the invention, which illustrates
the invention's interior elements as viewed from the top.
FIG. 6 is a partial elevational view of a cooling device which
is located in the upper portion of the cabinet; and FIG. 7 is a
partial elevational view of a heating device also located in the
upper portion of the cabinet.
FIG. 8 is a partial elevational side and of a pulley assembly and
absorption tube which are positioned inside of the cabinet and above
the water bottle, and FIG. 9 is a partial front view of said pulley
assembly and absorption tube.
FIG. 10 is a partial elevational view of a cart when pulled out
of the cabinet, said cart utilized to hold the water bottle with
its open top end up, and FIG. 11 is a partial elevational view of
the cart when pushed into the cabinet.
FIG. 12 is a schematic lay-out of an electric circuit which is
provided to operate a pumping device, a melody alarm, an operation
switch and a forward and reverse turning motor.
FIG. 13 is a perspective view of a conventional water dispenser,
which depicts some of the prior art.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
A typical embodiment of the invention is illustrated in the perspective
views of FIG. 1 and the cross-sectional views of FIGS. 2 3 and
The front perspective view of FIG. 1 shows a water dispenser cabinet
as it appears to the user. An upper front panel 1 contains an operation
switch with LED's 6 and a melody alarm 5 to warn the user of the
need to supply a replacement water container or water bottle. A
first faucet 2 for hot water and a second faucet 3 for cold water
are also located on the upper front panel, and a saucer 4 is positioned
beneath the faucets in order to collect water that may spill when
the user operates the faucets. A cart panel 7 is located immediately
adjacent to and beneath the upper front panel. The rear perspective
view of FIG. 1 illustrates the water dispenser as it appears from
the rear. An upper back panel 9 contains a power cord port 10 a
fuse 11 and an on/off switch 12.
The cross-sectional views of FIGS. 2 3 and 4 illustrate the inside
portion of the water dispenser cabinet. The inside of the cabinet
is divided into a top and bottom portion separated by a middle shield
panel 21. A moveable cart assembly 44 shown on FIGS. 3 4 10 and
11 is positioned in the bottom portion of the cabinet, said cart
assembly containing the cart panel 7 with an outside surface and
an inside surface, said outside surface containing a built-in handle
opening 39. A lever 43 is located within the handle opening, said
lever releasably connected to a pair of locks 42 which are released
when the handle is grabbed to pull the moveable cart assembly out
of the water dispenser cabinet. A pair of casters 37 are connected
to the bottom, front portion of the cart assembly and a strut 38
member is connected to the bottom rear portion of the assembly.
A pair of top horizontal cart guide rails 40 are attached to the
inside surface of the cart panel and a pair of bottom horizontal
cabinet guide rails 41 are attached to the bottom of the cabinet
assembly, said top and bottom rails positioned such that the top
rails slide along the bottom rails when the cart is pulled out of
the cabinet and pushed into the cabinet.
A water container or water bottle 8 containing an open end is positioned
inside of the moveable cart with the bottle's open end up. An upper
elongated fastener A and a lower elongated fastener B are each connected
to the moveable cart assembly frame to prevent the water bottle
A pulley 18 is located in the top portion of the cabinet and attached
to the middle shield panel by means of a guide bracket 20 said
pulley having a flexible absorption tube 17 partially wound around
the pulley with a first end of the tube positioned so as to permit
it to pass through a circular opening in the middle shield panel
and through a circular opening in an absorption tube guide 25 located
adjacent to the underside of the shield panel and concentric with
the middle shield panel opening. When the moveable cart and water
bottle are positioned inside of the water dispenser cabinet, the
first end of the absorption tube is located directly above and in
an axial position relative to the center of the water bottle's open
end. A sealing cap 26 is connected to the first end of the absorption
tube so that the open end of the water bottle is sealed when the
absorption tube is inserted into the bottle.
A forward and reverse turning motor 19 is mounted to the guide
bracket and axially connected to the pulley, said motor's operation
being electrically controlled by a forward micro-switch 22 and a
reverse micro-switch 23 both switches located on the guide bracket
and above the pulley.
A second end of the absorption tube is connected to one end of
a spiral hose 14 said spiral hoses's other end connected to an
electrically controlled pumping device 13 said pumping device connected
to a cold water tank 16 by means of a first connection pipe 15.
A second connection pipe 27 connects the cold water tank to a hot
water tank 28. A pair of float sensors 29 are provided to sense
the water level in each tank.
A thermo-electric module 30 is attached to the bottom of the cold
water tank, said module containing a cooling pin 31 a first heat
sink 32 and a second heat sink 33 and a fan 34. An electrically
controlled die casting heater 35 is attached to the bottom of the
hot water tank and the temperature range is controlled by a thermostat
An electrically operated control unit 24 controls the operation
of the forward and reverse turning motor, micro-switches, float
sensors, pumping device, melody alarm and operation switch.
The water dispenser is operated by pulling the moveable cart out
of the water dispenser cabinet by lifting the lever located within
the handle opening. This action releases the locks, which permits
the cart to be rolled out of the cabinet, being guided by the cabinet
and cart rails. Once the cart is pulled out of the cabinet a sufficient
distance, a water bottle may be placed inside the cart with the
bottle's open end up. The bottle is secured in the cart by using
the upper and lower fasteners. Once the bottle is securely placed
inside the cart, the cart is pushed back inside the cabinet. The
absorption tube is inserted into the bottle by turning on the operation
switch which activates the forward and reverse turning motor. When
the motor turns forward, it causes the pulley to rotate which lowers
the absorption tube's first end into the water bottle. The absorption
tube's vertical movement is controlled by the forward micro-switch
which is set to turn off the motor when the tube reaches the bottom
of the bottle. When the absorption tube is fully extended, the sealing
cap seals the open end of the bottle. At this point, the pump is
activated which pumps the water from the bottle up into the cold
water tank and eventually into the hot water tank. The float sensor
in each tank senses the water level and sends a signal to the control
unit to cause the pump device to pump water until both tanks are
When a user operates the faucets to obtain water from the hot or
cold tanks, pump activation of the pumping device will be delayed
by the control unit for a pre-determined time so that any resultant
pumping noise occurs after the user has left the vicinity of the
When the water in the bottle is completely emptied, the hot and
cold water tank water levels will then fall below certain pre-set
valves. When this occurs, the pumping device will stop operating
and a signal from the control unit will cause the melody alarm to
send a warning that the water bottle is empty. The user then operates
the operation switch to raise the absorption tube out of the water
bottle to permit the cart and the empty bottle to be removed from