Water filter abstract
A shower water filter assembly which includes an elongated housing
containing a cartridge of filter media, and which is connected to
the water outlet in a shower. In order to permit the elongated housing
to have sufficient length to efficiently perform a filtering function,
a flexible hose is coupled to the bottom of the housing and extends
through a tubular wand to the shower head. The wand and shower head
are supported, for example, on the side of the cylindrical housing
so as to provide sufficient elevation for the shower head for normal
shower use. Alternatively, the wand and shower head may be removed
from the supporting bracket and used manually for the shower.
Water filter claims
1. A shower filter assembly including: a housing having an elongated
cylindrical configuration; a cylindrical cartridge containing filter
media removably mounted in said housing in coaxial relationship
therewith; a coupling member mounted at one end of the housing for
attaching the housing to a water outlet; a flexible hose member
having a first end connected to the other end of said housing for
receiving filtered water from said housing; a tubular elongated
wand connected to the other end of said flexible hose member; a
shower head connected to the distal end of said wand; and bracket
means mounted on the housing for removably supporting said tubular
elongated wand and said shower head during the operation of the
filter assembly with said wand extending upwardly from the lower
end of the housing and inclined outwardly from the housing.
2. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 in which said
bracket means is secured to one side of said housing, and which
includes an arm mounted on said wand for removably supporting said
wand and said shower head on said bracket means.
3. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 2 in which said
arm is angularly adjustable.
4. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 in which said
coupling member includes a valve having a movable member therein
and a seat for receiving the movable member, said movable member
engaging said seat to prevent water flow through said coupling member
when said cartridge is removed from said housing, and in which said
cartridge includes a projecting member positioned to engage said
movable member in said valve and lift said movable member off said
seat when said cartridge is in place in said housing.
5. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 and which includes
a cap removably coupled to said housing to hold said cartridge in
said housing and to permit removal of said cartridge from said housing
when the cap is removed.
6. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 5 and which includes
an annular sealing member formed integrally with said cartridge
and providing a seal between said cap and said housing.
7. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 6 in which said
sealing member is a double-lipped flexible seal configured to be
pressure energized into a sealing position.
8. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 in which the
bore of said cartridge has a stepped configuration to enhance mixing
of water flowing through said cartridge and the filter media contained
9. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 in which said
coupling member is mounted on said housing by a ball-and-socket
10. The shower filter assembly defined in claim 1 and which includes
an apertured plug fitted into said other end of the cartridge in
snap fit relationship therewith.
Water filter description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
A shower water filter assembly is provided for filtering harmful
substances, such as chlorine, trihalomethanes, volatile organic
compounds, and odors from the shower water. The principal purpose
of the filter assembly of the invention is to filter out chlorine
from the shower water which is absorbed more by the human body during
showers than by drinking the water.
As discussed in detail in U.S. Pat. No. 5300224 which issued
Apr. 8 1994 to Frederick A. Farley, for over a hundred years the
recognition and linking of macroscopic and microscopic pathogens
to the aesthetic and health qualities of water has resulted in a
search for effective water disinfection and treatment procedures.
The introduction of water chlorinization, as a continuous water
disinfecting process, occurred soon after the turn of the century.
Today, approximately 80% of all potable water systems in the United
States use chlorine as a water disinfectant.
However, the treatment of water with chlorine has certain side
effects. Even in lower concentrations, such as originally used by
commercial food processors and bottlers, chlorine creates an objectionable
odor and taste. Also, as chlorine is added to water containing pathogenic
microorganisms, the highly reactive chlorine combines with fatty
acids and carbon fragments to form a variety of toxic compounds.
Recent studies have indicated that chlorine and the compounds which
chlorine forms in water can be inhaled and absorbed through the
skin by persons during bathing or showering. According to research
findings presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society
in the 1980's, it was shown that the taking of long, hot showers
is a health risk. In summary, this presentation stated that taking
showers, and to a lesser extent, baths, leads to a greater exposure
to toxic chemicals contained in the water than does drinking the
water. Due to the increased temperatures and surface area, the chemicals
evaporate out of the hot water and are absorbed through the skin.
Moreover, the chlorine also escapes to the surrounding air and can
be harmful to persons breathing the air around showers and baths,
and thus increasing the chance of harmful exposure beyond that which
such persons would encounter by actually drinking the water.
Accordingly, shower filter assemblies have been proposed in the
past for filtering out chlorine and chlorine compounds from the
shower water. Such filter assemblies are described, for example,
in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5300224; 5008011; 5152464; and 4933080.
The prior art shower filters comprise, for the most part, short
cylindrical housings which contain the filtering compound, and which
are interposed between the shower outlet pipe and the shower head.
Such housings must be relatively short, or else the actual shower
head would be lowered to an inconvenient height insofar as the person
taking the shower is concerned. However, short filter housings have
the disadvantage of producing a relatively short dwell time of the
water flowing through the filter media, and this decreases the filtration
efficiency. Insofar as the prior art assemblies are concerned, any
lengthening of the filter housing would serve to lower the location
of the shower head to an inconvenient height that would be too low
for normal use of the shower by most persons.
The filter assembly of the present invention utilizes a filter
housing that may be relatively long so that efficient filtering
action may be realized. In accordance with the invention, the shower
head is coupled to the bottom of the filter through a tubular wand
and a flexible hose. The wand may be supported on an appropriate
bracket on the side of the filter housing, and the shower head itself
may be elevated to any convenient height, despite the fact that
the filter housing extends down into the shower booth. Also, if
desired, the wand may be lifted up off the bracket, and used manually
for a shower without any obstruction being encountered due to the
length of the filter housing.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is an elevational view of a shower filter assembly representing
one embodiment of the invention which includes an elongated filter
housing and a shower head coupled to the housing through a tubular
wand and flexible hose, and supported on a bracket on the side of
the elongated housing;
FIG. 2 is an elevational view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 turned
90 degrees about its longitudinal axis;
FIG. 3 is a side sectional view of the filter assembly taken substantially
along the line 3--3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the joint between
the filter housing and a filter housing cap, these elements being
included in the embodiment of FIGS. 1-3;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view, like FIG. 3 and showing
a filter cartridge contained in the filter housing and having a
stepped inner bore surface; and
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view showing a modified version
of the shower filter assembly of the invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE ILLUSTRATED EMBODIMENTS
The shower filter assembly shown in FIGS. 1 2 and 3 is appropriate
for filtering chlorine, and other substances such as those referred
to above, out of the shower water.
The assembly may be attached to the conventional shower water supply
pipe by means, for example, of a universal ball-and-socket coupler
10 which permits the assembly to be angularly adjusted to any desired
The coupler 10 defines a passage for the shower water from the
supply pipe into the interior of an elongated cylindrical housing
12. Housing 12 contains a replaceable filter cartridge 14 which,
in turn, contains appropriate filtering media 16 such as carbon
The filter cartridge 14 supports an external porous filter pad
18 at the apertured inlet end of the cartridge. The porous pad 18
is formed of appropriate materials for filtering relatively large
particles out of the shower water. A second porous pad 20 is supported
within the filter cartridge at the inlet end. Yet another porous
pad 22 is supported within the cartridge 14 at the outlet end. An
apertured end plug 24 is fitted into the outlet end of the cartridge,
for example, by a snap-fit engagement.
A cap 26 is threaded to the outlet end of the cylindrical housing
12 to hold the cartridge 14 in place, and to permit removal and
replacement of the cartridge. Cap 26 defines a fitting for receiving
a coupler 28 (FIGS. 1 and 2) which is mounted at one end of a flexible
hose 30. Hose 30 is coupled to a conventional tubular wand 32 and
a conventional shower head 34 is mounted on the distal end of the
The wand 32 and shower head 34 may be supported on a bracket 36
by means of an arm 38 attached to the wand. Bracket 36 is mounted
on the side of the cylindrical housing 12. Arm 38 may be set to
any desired angular position so as to establish the inclination
of the wand and shower head. If so desired, the shower may be operated
with the wand in place on the bracket 36 as shown in FIGS. 1 and
2. Alternatively, the wand may be hand-held in accordance with conventional
In either event, cylindrical housing 12 may be made sufficiently
long to enable the filter efficiently to perform its filtering function,
and yet permitting the shower head 34 to be held at an appropriate
height so as not to interfere with the person taking the shower.
An integral seal 37 is formed on cartridge 14 in the vicinity of
the threaded joint between the housing 12 and cap 26 as better
shown in the enlarged fragmentary view of FIG. 4. The seal prevents
any leakage of water from the inlet to the outlet around the filter
cartridge, and it also prevents any external leakage of the water
through the joint. The seal is double-lipped, and it is pressure
energized. Since the seal is part of the cartridge, it is replaced
each time the cartridge is replaced. As an alternative, O-rings
(not shown) may be mounted between cartridge 16 and housing 12 and
In the embodiment of FIG. 5 the bore of the filter cartridge 14
is stepped to enhance mixing of the shower water and the filter
In the embodiment of FIG. 6 a ball seal 38 is included in the
coupler 14 and the ball normally bears against a seat 40 to prevent
the flow of water through the unit whenever the cartridge 14 is
not contained in the housing 12. However, when the cartridge is
inserted into the housing 12 a projection 14A extending from the
inlet end of the cartridge bears against the ball 38 and forces
it away from its seat 40 so that water is then free to flow through
the filter cartridge.
While particular embodiments of the invention have been shown and
described, modifications may be made, and it is intended in the
following claims to cover all such modifications which fall within
the true spirit and scope of the invention.