Title:
Splash protector/shower curtain attachments
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A splash guard for preventing water spray from the shower head from wetting the floor. The splash guard has a substantially vertical member and slanted member that attaches to the vertical member via a substantially horizontal base member. The shower curtain is secured to the vertical member, which also assists in the prevention of water spray from wetting or reaching the bathroom floor.



Inventors:
Carter, Yana (Laurel, MD, US)
Application Number:
10/793776
Publication Date:
11/25/2004
Filing Date:
03/08/2004
Assignee:
CARTER YANA
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
348/E5.128
International Classes:
A47K3/00; A47K3/38; H04N5/64; (IPC1-7): A47K3/32
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PHILLIPS, CHARLES E
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Yana Carter (Laurel, MD, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A curtain holder for securing the shower curtain to the bathtub or shower stall (short wall) comprising; means to secure the shower curtain to the curtain holder, means to secure the curtain holder to the bathtub or shower stall.

2. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure the shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise hook and loop type fasteners.

3. The curtain holder according to claim 2 wherein said means to secure the curtain holder to the short wall comprise suction cups.

4. The curtain holder according to claim 3 further comprising a handle and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

5. The curtain holder according to claim 2 wherein said means to secure the curtain holder to the short wall comprise adhesives.

6. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure the shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise a channel attached to the short wall and a guide attached to the shower curtain.

7. The curtain holder according to claim 6 wherein said means to attach said curtain holder to the short wall comprise suction cups.

8. The curtain holder according to claim 7 further comprising a handle for easy removal and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

9. The curtain holder according to claim 6 wherein said means to attach said curtain holder to the bathtub or shower stall comprise adhesives.

10. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure the shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise; a rod having a pivot at one end and a first magnet at a second end, a second magnet attached to the short wall such that upon pivoting the rod about said pivot forces said first magnet into close contact with said second magnet.

11. The curtain holder according to claim 10 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise suction cups.

12. The curtain holder according to claim 11 further comprising a handle for easy removal and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

13. The curtain holder according to claim 10 wherein said means to attach said curtain holder to the short wall comprise adhesives.

14. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure the shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise; a rod having a spring loaded pivot at one end such that when said rod is moved in an outward position and then released, said spring loaded pivot forces said rod back into its initial position.

15. The curtain holder according to claim 14 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprises suction cups.

16. The curtain holder according to claim 15 further comprising a handle for easy removal and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

17. The curtain holder according to claim 14 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise adhesives.

18. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure said shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise; a snap button attached to the short wall and a corresponding snap button attached to the shower curtain.

19. The curtain holder according to claim 18 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise suction cups.

20. The curtain holder according to claim 19 further comprising a handle for easy removal and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

21. The curtain holder according to claim 18 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise adhesives.

22. The curtain holder according to claim 1 wherein said means to secure said shower curtain to the curtain holder comprise; a magnet attached to the short wall and a corresponding magnet attached to the shower curtain.

23. The curtain holder according to claim 22 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise suction cups.

24. The curtain holder according to claim 23 further comprising a handle for easy removal and a hook to hang said curtain holder during periods of non-use.

25. The curtain holder according to claim 22 wherein said means to secure said curtain holder to the short wall comprise adhesives.

Description:

[0001] This application is based upon and claims priority from the previously filed provisional application filed on Mar. 10, 2003, having Ser. No. 60/453,091 and titled: SPLASH PROTECTOR AND BATHTUB/SHOWER STALL ATTACHMENTS FOR SHOWER STALL HAVING MULTIMEDIA DISPLAY

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] 1. Field of the Invention

[0003] The invention relates to splash guards and means to attach a shower curtain to the splash guard or to the shower stall or bathroom tub itself.

[0004] 2. Description of Related Art

[0005] Water mildew in and around bathrooms is a seemingly never-ending problem. Water mildew is annoying and the damage therefrom can become quite expensive. The smell from mildew would be bad enough, but serious illnesses have occurred due to problems with mildew, therefore the water mildew could be a sign of a more serious problem. If water sits in a specific place for a prolonged period of time, the floor can become weakened and lose its structural integrity. This can result in water leakage down towards the rooms or space below the bathroom or shower stall. The water leakage can sometimes cause serious damage to space below the bathroom, such damage sometimes going undetected for years. As the structural damage to the floor increases, the possibility of a collapse increases. So it can be seen that water mildew causes troubles ranging from the merely annoying bad smell to the serious structural damage of a weakened bathroom floor.

[0006] The initial source of the water mildew in many cases comes from the seemingly innocuous spray of water from the shower. Not only are the above mentioned problems caused by water spray but also injury due to slipping from water collected on the bathroom floor. It is foreseeable that injury due to slipping and falling because of excess water on the floor could result in enormous medical bills and insurance increases. So it has become evident that the relatively harmful spray from the shower is the chief cause of problems ranging from bad odors, structural damage and possible personal injury. The prevention of the water spray from reaching the bathroom floor is the best and most logical way of preventing the damage.

[0007] Splash guards have been described in the patent literature. For example, U.S. Pat. Nos. 1,791,696 issued to Alexander, 1,971,802 issued to Zechiel, 3,984,880 issued to Schrameyer, 4,620,332 issued to Laird, 4,888,835 issued to Baumann, 5,222,261 issued to Tooze et al., 5,493,738 issued to Sanderson et al., 5,978,985 issued to Thurman, 6,035,461 issued Nguyen, 6,195,816 issued to Glassman, 6,341,388 issued to Roberts, Switzerland Pat. No. 197806 issued to Strittmatter and French Pat. No. 2,544,976 all describe devices useful in preventing water spray from a shower reaching the bathroom floor. These patents all endeavor to prevent shower splash but lack in some way the teaching of the instant invention. For instance, some of the patents only describe shower guards that prevent water from escaping between the shower curtain and the shower wall, others attach to a bathtub and not the short wall of a shower stall, still others are not easily removable from the short wall of a shower stall and none have graphics that will make the bathtub time more enjoyable for children and adults.

[0008] None of the above inventions and patents, taken either singly or in combination, is seen to describe the instant invention as claimed.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] The invention relates to a splash guard for the short wall of a shower stall or the bathtub that is easily removable from the tub and is dimensioned and configured to have a first wall, a base member and a second wall wherein the two walls and the base member form a channel such that the channel is slanted to allow captured water spray to run back into the shower stall. The splash guard is attached to the inner side of the short wall of the shower stall or tub. The splash guard has a generally vertical first member that is secured close to the short wall and which rises above the short wall. Hereafter, the term short wall shall refer to the shower stall or bathtub and the terms short wall, shower stall or bathtub are interchangeable. The shower curtain can be attached in numerous ways to the first member, including but not limited to magnetically, clamps or snap buttons. There are also alternative embodiments to the invention that will be disclosed later. There is, therefore, a need for a splash guard that protects the bathroom floor from the shower splash wherein the splash guard has means to secure the shower curtain thereto.

[0010] Accordingly, it is a principal object of the invention to provide a splash guard that prevents shower splash from reaching the bathroom floor.

[0011] Still another object of the invention is to provide a splash guard that is dimensioned and configured to prevent shower splash from reaching the bathroom floor.

[0012] It is again an object of the invention to provide a splash guard that has means to attach the shower curtain to the splash guard.

[0013] It is an object of the invention to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof in an apparatus for the purposes described which is inexpensive, dependable and fully effective in accomplishing its intended purposes.

[0014] These and other objects of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0015] FIG. 1 is a front view of the preferred embodiment.

[0016] FIG. 2 is a right side view of the preferred embodiment.

[0017] FIG. 3 is a front view of a second embodiment.

[0018] FIG. 4 is a front view of the third embodiment.

[0019] FIG. 5 is a front view of a fourth embodiment.

[0020] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a fourth embodiment.

[0021] FIG. 7 is a front view of a fifth embodiment.

[0022] FIG. 8 is a right side view of a fifth embodiment.

[0023] FIG. 9 is a front view of the sixth embodiment.

[0024] FIG. 10 is a right side view of the sixth embodiment.

[0025] FIG. 11 is a right side view of a seventh embodiment.

[0026] Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0027] The invention relates to a splash guard dimensioned and configured to be removably placed upon the short wall of a shower stall or bathtub. The splash guard prevents water from escaping the shower stall or bathtub and landing on the bathroom floor thereby preventing potential mildew while simultaneously providing entertainment via a graphical display. Water is prevented from escaping the shower stall or bathtub by incorporating within the splash guard elements that will facilitate the capture and redirection of shower splash before such splash hits the bathroom floor.

[0028] The shower curtain can be attached to the splash guard a number of ways. One attachment option is to attach a channel (or curtain holder) to the first member wherein the channel is dimensioned and configured to receive a guide which is located on the shower curtain. The guide or male member fits securely within the channel or female member, is then slid down the length of the channel or curtain holder until it reaches the end. At this moment or position the curtain is securely held by the curtain holder. Another attachment option is to attach the curtain to the splash guard via snap buttons. One snap button is placed on the splash guard whereas the corresponding snap button is secured onto the shower curtain. Yet a third option considers placing a pivotal rod upon the first member. This option is used by pivoting the rod into an open position, sliding the curtain between the rod and the first member and then closing the rod. The closed rod can be secured into place by either using magnets or by having the rod have a rigid pivot mechanism wherein the rod, once moved, stays in place until physically moved again.

[0029] Turning now to the drawings, in FIGS. 1 and 2, splash guard 10 is shown having a first member 12 which is substantially vertical, a second member 14 which is slanted towards the shower stall or bathtub and a base member 20 which is substantially horizontal. A curtain holder 16 is attached to the inside face of first member 12. Curtain holder 16 is dimensioned and configured to receive a corresponding male member (not shown) that is attached to the shower curtain. The user places the corresponding male member within the slot of the curtain holder 16, then slides the curtain to the end of the curtain holder 16, therefore securing the curtain in place (the guide or male member may or may not be collapsible).

[0030] Turning now to FIG. 3 of the drawings, an alternative method of attaching the curtain to the first member 12 is shown. Attached in a pivotal connection 26 is a rod 24 having a first end 28 and a second end 30. The first end 28 of rod 24 is secured to first member 12 via pivot connection 26. A first magnet 32 is attached to first member 12 and a second magnet 34 is attached to the second end 30 of rod 24. In operation, the user slides one end of the curtain between rod 24 and first member 12. The user then brings the magnet 34 of rod 24 into close contact with magnet 32 such that a bond is established between magnets 32 and 34 strong enough to hold in place the curtain. In place of magnets to hold the rod 24 close to first member 12, the pivot connection 26 can be designed to automatically pivot towards first member 12. In this embodiment the user would pull rod 24 in an outward motion away from first member 12, place the curtain between rod 24 and first member 12 and then release rod 24 to collapse back to first member 12, therefore pinning the curtain between rod 24 and first member 12.

[0031] FIG. 4 discloses yet another way to attach the curtain to first member 40. Snap buttons 42 are attached onto first member 40 such that when corresponding snap buttons attached to the curtain are brought into mating relationship with snap buttons 42 then the curtain is securely attached to first member 40. Although not shown, magnets (or a magnetic strip) could replace the snap buttons 42 wherein one magnet would be placed on the curtain and its corresponding magnet would be placed on first member 40. As with the snap buttons when the two magnets are brought together than the curtain would be securely attached to the first member.

[0032] The curtain holder is disclosed in several embodiments, all of which serve the central function of attaching the curtain to the short wall in a safe, efficient and inexpensive way. The shower curtain can be attached to the bathtub or short wall in a number of ways. One method of attachment is to have a curtain holder having hook and loop type fasteners on the top of the curtain holder, suction cups on the bottom for attachment to the bathtub or shower stall, a handle on one end and a hook for storage on the other end. The shower curtain has attached thereto the corresponding hook and loop type fasteners. Another attachment option is to attach a channel to the bathtub or short wall wherein the channel is dimensioned and configured to receive a guide which is located on the shower curtain. The guide or male member fits securely within the channel or female member, is then slid down the length of the channel or curtain holder until it reaches the end. At this moment or position the curtain is securely held by the curtain holder to the bathtub or short wall. Another attachment option is to attach the curtain to the bathtub or short wall via snap buttons. One snap button is placed on the bathtub or short wall whereas the corresponding snap button is secured onto the shower curtain. Yet a third option considers placing a pivotal rod upon the bathtub or short wall. This option is used by pivoting the rod into an open position, sliding the curtain between the rod and the bathtub and then closing the rod. The closed rod can be secured into place by either using magnets or by having the rod have a rigid pivot mechanism wherein the rod, once moved, stays in place until physically moved again. A similar attachment option considers a rod member that is spring loaded and attached to the bathtub or short wall and when the user pulls it away, slides the curtain between the bathtub and the rod, then releases the rod the rod is forced via the spring loading to clamp down upon the bathtub, therefore securing the shower curtain therebetween.

[0033] Turning now to FIGS. 5 and 6 of the drawings, curtain holder 10 is shown having hook and loop type fasteners 12 with corresponding hook and loop type fasteners on the shower curtain. Suction cups 14 secure the curtain holder to the bathtub or short wall 20. A handle 16 makes for easy handling by the user and hook 18 allows the curtain holder 10 to be hung after use. Now looking at FIGS. 7 and 8 of the drawings, curtain holder 30 is shown having a channel or female member 32 which is dimensioned and configured to receive a male member or guide 34 that is attached to shower curtain 36. In use, the user simply slides male member 34 into channel 32 and then slides male member 34 to the opposite end, therefore securing the shower curtain 36 to the bathtub or shower stall 20. FIGS. 9, 10, and 11 disclose alternate versions of the invention shown in FIGS. 7 and 8 except that here the curtain holder 60 does not span the length of the bathtub or short wall. FIGS. 10 and 11 show different methods of securing the holder to the bathtub or shower stall. In one method, the curtain holder 60 is secured via adhesives 65 to the bathtub or shower stall 20 and in another method, the curtain holder 68 is secured via suction cups 74.

[0034] It is important to note that each of the described embodiments can be scaled down as shown in FIGS. 9, 10, and 11 to be attached at opposite ends of the short wall; excluding the embodiments in FIGS. 1 and 2.

[0035] It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the sole embodiments described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.