Title:
Overhead waterfall shower
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A showerhead assembly includes a showerhead that is generally rectilinear in shape and mounted transverse to a support. The support is mounted between a first shower wall and a second shower wall such that the showerhead overhangs the shower to provide a waterfall effect. The showerhead may be manually positioned along the support or may be driven by a drive system to selectively transit and/or pivot the showerhead relative the support.



Inventors:
Deboer, Jeffrey A. (Ann Arbor, MI, US)
Hughes, Aaron M. (San Francisco, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/083572
Publication Date:
10/05/2006
Filing Date:
03/18/2005
Assignee:
Alsons Corporation
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47K3/28
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PHILLIPS, CHARLES E
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Carlson, Gaskey & Olds/Masco Corporation (400 West Maple Road Suite 350, Birmingham, MI, 48009, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A showerhead assembly comprising: a support; and a showerhead mounted transverse to said support.

2. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said showerhead is movable along said support.

3. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said showerhead is pivotable relative to said support.

4. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, further comprising a drive to transit said showerhead along said support.

5. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 4, wherein said drive reciprocates said showerhead back and forth along said support.

6. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 4, wherein said drive includes a mechanical drive structure.

7. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 4, wherein said drive includes a hydraulic drive structure.

8. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said showerhead is rectilinear.

9. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said showerhead is generally perpendicular to said support.

10. The showerhead assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said showerhead dispenses water as a sheet.

11. A shower comprising: a first shower wall; a second shower wall; a support mounted to said first wall and said second wall; and a showerhead mounted to said support.

12. The shower as recited in claim 11, further comprising a drive to move said showerhead along said support.

13. The shower as recited in claim 11, wherein said support extends from a top of said first wall and a top of said second wall.

14. The shower as recited in claim 11, wherein said support bridges said first wall and said second wall.

15. The shower as recited in claim 11, wherein said showerhead is mounted transverse to said support.

16. A method of showering water comprising the steps of: (1) locating a showerhead on a support which extends between a first shower wall and a second shower wall; and (2) showering water from the showerhead.

17. A method as recited in claim 16, further comprising the step of: transiting the showerhead along the support.

18. A method as recited in claim 16, further comprising the step of: articulating the showerhead relative to the support.

19. A method as recited in claim 16, wherein said step (2) further comprises: showering water from the showerhead as a sheet of water.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a shower, and more particularly to a powered showerhead assembly that generates sheets of water to provide a waterfall effect.

Oversized luxury showers and accessories are becoming increasing desirable in new construction and bathroom renovations. Such showers typically include one or more a multi-function showerheads that have a plurality of spray modes, including various standard sprays and pulsed sprays. Multi-function showerheads may also have flow control valves to allow the user to adjust the flow pressure to a desired level. Other conventional showerheads provide simulated rainfall or waterfall experiences.

Although somewhat effective in providing such simulated experiences conventional rainfall and waterfall showerheads may be lacking in the simulated rainfall or waterfall effect. Such effects are typically constrained adjacent to a shower wall which minimizes the bather's experience.

Accordingly, it is desirable to provide a showerhead assembly which provides a significantly satisfactory simulation of being within a rainfall or waterfall.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A showerhead assembly according to the present invention includes a showerhead that is generally rectilinear in shape and mounted transverse to a support. The support is mounted between a first shower wall and a second shower wall such that the showerhead overhangs the shower. The showerhead is mounted to the support such that the water dispensed therefrom is generally perpendicular to the support to provide a waterfall-like effect

The showerhead is longitudinally and pivotally mounted to the support. The showerhead may be manually positioned along the support to assure that a bather within the shower surround is directly in line with the waterfall effect. The showerhead may also be driven by a drive system to selectively transit and/or pivot the showerhead along the support.

The present invention therefore provides a showerhead assembly which provides a significantly satisfactory simulation of being within a rainfall or waterfall.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The various features and advantages of this invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description of the currently preferred embodiment. The drawings that accompany the detailed description can be briefly described as follows:

FIG. 1 is a general perspective view an exemplary shower surround and showerhead assembly;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of a mechanically powered showerhead assembly; and

FIG. 3 is a sectional view of a hydraulically powered showerhead assembly.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

FIG. 1 illustrates a general perspective view of a shower 10. The shower 10 generally includes a base 12, one or more walls 14 and a ceiling 16. It should be understood that the term “base” is not limited to just shower bases but that relatively deeper tubs and the like will also benefit from the present invention. It should be further understood that although a particular component arrangement is disclosed in the illustrated embodiment, other arrangements, e.g. molded shower and tub surrounds or tiled construction will benefit from the instant invention.

The shower 10 includes a showerhead assembly 18 mounted above the base 12. The showerhead assembly 18 preferably dispenses water in sheets to provide a waterfall effect to the bather, however, other spray patterns may also be provided.

The showerhead assembly 18 generally includes a showerhead 20 mounted to a support 22. The support 22 is preferably mounted between a first shower wall 14a and a second shower wall 14b such that the showerhead 20 overhangs the shower 10. The showerhead assembly 18 is particularly useful with a shower surround in which the support 22 may be mounted to bridge two walls 14a, 14 which do not have a molded ceiling. The support 22 preferably extends from a shower wall 14a which also includes a handheld shower sprayer 24 or the like to facilitate water communication.

The showerhead 20 is generally rectilinear in shape and mounted transverse to the support 22. That is, the showerhead 20 is mounted to the support such that the water dispensed therefrom is generally perpendicular to the support 22 for a waterfall-like effect. It should be understood that although a rectilinear waterfall shower is preferred, other shower effects will also be usable with the instant invention.

The showerhead 20 is longitudinally (illustrated schematically by arrow L) and pivotally (illustrated schematically by arrow P) mounted to the support 22. The showerhead 20 is manually positionable along the support 22 to assure that a bather within the shower 10 can be directly in line with the waterfall effect. The showerhead 20 is connected to a water supply though a flexible conduit Fw or the like located through the support 22. The flexible conduit Fw preferably coils and uncoils from within the support 22 to provide a water communication to the showerhead 20 as the showerhead 20 is longitudinally (illustrated schematically by arrow L) and pivotally (illustrated schematically by arrow P) moved relative to the support 22. It should be understood that the flexible conduit Fw may be located within the shower wall 14 and that various extension mechanism may likewise be usable with the present invention.

Alternatively, or in addition thereto, the showerhead 20 is driven by a drive system 26 (illustrated schematically in FIG. 2). The drive system 26 selectively reciprocates the showerhead 20 along the support 22 and/or pivots the showerhead 20 relative thereto to provide an additional random waterfall effect to a bather. It should be understood that various pivoting an translational systems will be usable with the present invention. In additional or alternatively, the water spray itself may be pivotable relative the showerhead 20.

The drive system 26 may be a mechanical system in which gears and a battery-powered motor drive the showerhead 20 along the support 22 in which the support operates as a track. One of ordinary skill in the art with the benefit of the teaching contained herein will be able to readily incorporate various gear drive systems within a shower heat to provide the desired longitudinal and pivotal movement.

Alternatively, the drive system 26 may be a hydraulic system in which water pressure is utilized to drive the showerhead 20 through a piston or other arrangement. By utilizing water pressure the showerhead 20 may be both supplied and driven by water which thereby reduces installation complexity. One of ordinary skill in the art with the benefit of the teachings contained herein will be able to readily incorporate hydraulic drive systems within a showerhead to provide the desired longitudinal and pivotal movement. It should be understood that various drive systems will be usable with the present invention.

Although particular step sequences are shown, described, and claimed, it should be understood that steps may be performed in any order, separated or combined unless otherwise indicated and will still benefit from the present invention.

The foregoing description is exemplary rather than defined by the limitations within. Many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. The preferred embodiments of this invention have been disclosed, however, one of ordinary skill in the art would recognize that certain modifications would come within the scope of this invention. It is, therefore, to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described. For that reason the following claims should be studied to determine the true scope and content of this invention.