Title:
Low clutter high flow gutter
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A gutter system designed to reduce debris clutter and improve flow through the reduction of internal obstructions is disclosed. As described the gutter system is supported by an external support structure with minimal intrusion upon the internal space of the gutter. Furthermore, the transition from the horizontal sections of the gutter system to the vertical sections is smooth and continuous reducing resistance to flow and eliminating the orifice effect common in the prior art. The gutter system as taught may be implemented in a continuous, seamless method of manufacturing or may be manufactured and assembled in parts with the use of a topless elbow design.



Inventors:
Awad, Magdi Morcos (Davenport, IA, US)
Application Number:
11/200913
Publication Date:
02/16/2006
Filing Date:
08/10/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04D13/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
FONSECA, JESSIE T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Law Office of Jay R. Hamilton, PLC. (Davenport, IA, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. An improved guttering system comprising: a. A horizontally positioned three-sided trough area having two sidewalls and a bottom wall; b. A vertically disposed three-sided trough area having two sidewalls and bottom wall; and, c. An arcuate three-sided trough area having two sidewalls and a bottom wall, said arcuate trough area connected between said horizontally positioned trough and vertically disposed trough to allow collection and removal of precipitation and debris.

2. The improved guttering system of claim 1 wherein the outer face of said troughs allows attachment of said guttering system to a structure.

3. The improved guttering system of claim 2 wherein the interior surface of said troughs when attached to said structure minimizes interference with collection and removal of precipitation and debris.

4. The improved guttering system of claim 3 wherein said guttering system is made from plastic.

5. The improved guttering system of claim 4 wherein said guttering system provides a smooth, continuous inner surface for elimination of water and debris.

6. The improved guttering system of claim 1 wherein the troughs are u-shaped.

7. An improved method of producing a guttering system for attachment to a structure wherein horizontal distribution transitions to vertical distribution by an arcuate member having only a bottom and sidewall to removal of precipitation and debris.

8. The improved method of producing a guttering system as claimed in claim 7 wherein the walls of the vertical distribution system are not continuous.

9. The improved method of producing a guttering system as claimed in claim 8 wherein the vertical distribution has a rectangular three-sided shape.

10. The improved method of producing a guttering system as claimed in 9 wherein said guttering system is made from plastic.

11. The improved guttering system of claim 6 wherein said guttering system provides a smooth, continuous inner surface for elimination of water and debris.

12. The improved guttering system of claim 6 wherein the outer face of said troughs allows attachment of said guttering system to a structure.

13. The improved guttering system of claim 12 wherein the interior surface of said troughs when attached to said structure minimizes interference with collection and removal of precipitation and debris.

14. An improved rain gutter clutter reduction device comprising: a topless elbow having two side walls and a bottom wall wherein said topless elbow attaches to and connects horizontal gutter troughs to vertical gutter troughs of a gutter system affixed to a structure to provide a continuous channel for water and debris to transition from the horizontal to vertical planes and exit said gutter system.

15. The improved rain gutter clutter reduction device of claim 14 wherein said topless elbow is affixed at the termination of the horizontal trough structure to eliminate low flow debris collection surfaces.

16. The improved rain gutter clutter reduction device of claim 15 wherein said vertical trough walls are non-continuous.

17. The improved rain gutter clutter reduction device of claim 16 wherein said device is made from plastic.

18. The improved guttering system of claim 14 wherein the troughs are u-shaped.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

Applicant herein claims priority from and incorporates herein by reference in its entirety provisional patent application filed on Aug. 10, 2004 and assigned Ser. No. 60,600,334.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to gutters and flow systems for attachment to the roof of a house or other building structure for the purpose of removing rain water from the house or structure.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

No federal funds were used to develop or create the invention disclosed and described in the patent application.

REFERENCE TO SEQUENCE LISTING, A TABLE, OR A COMPUTER PROGRAM LISTING COMPACT DISK APPENDIX

Not Applicable

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Rain gutters are used to catch precipitation flowing off the roof of a structure and direct it to selected locations, generally away from walkways and entryways. Rain gutters are typically installed along the roof line by attaching the rain gutter to the eaves fascia with brackets or other mounting fixtures. Water is directed toward the edge of the roof and into a gutter. Typically, openings in the bottom of the gutter allow for removal of the water. As typically described, the vertical section of the gutter extending downward and transporting the water to the ground level where it is dissipated is known as a downspout. In the typical arrangement connecting the horizontal portion of the gutter to the vertical downspout, the entrance of the vertical downspout presents an orifice for the water and debris to enter before proceeding to move vertically through the gutter system.

A problem many times considered and patented is that of debris accumulation in the gutter system. The prior art discloses many drainage systems that are intended to reduce the build-up of debris. For example, the system as described in U.S. Pat. No. 4,368,601 and issued to Price discloses a system allowing debris to leave the guttering system. Other systems disclosed attempt to address the problem resulting from debris collection by preventing debris from entering the gutter system in the first place. U.S. Pat. No. 5,457,916 issued to Tenute provides an example of this type of response as found in the prior art.

A weakness prevalent amongst the prior art, including that cited and incorporated by reference herein, is that in periods of above average rainfall, the gutter system can easily become overwhelmed by a rainstorm wherein several inches of rain can fall in as little as ten (10) minutes. Furthermore, the opening leading to the downspout usually is plugged by the debris previously mentioned. In this situation, the volume of water produced by this type of rainstorm can exceed the reduced capacity of the gutter system to remove the water. The resultant effect is that the structural integrity of both the gutter system attachment mechanism and the gutter system itself are compromised and maybe destroyed resulting in premature destruction or degradation of the gutter system. A damaged or inefficient gutter system may cause exterior damage to home by potentially saturating which can produce a variety of problems including fostering mold and mildew production. Additionally, poorly distributed water may eat away at foundations and basement walls. Leaks and cracks will develop and can worsen quickly in the winter months when the ground freezes and expands.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,998,386 attempts to address the deleterious combination of high flow and debris by providing an anti-clog cap. Unfortunately, in practice, without maintenance, the anti-clog cap becomes a wall and not a door or exit for the water and debris to pass through, thus again compounding the problem and stressing the gutter system. The patents and attendant prior art cited fail to address the problems with debris accumulation in gutters combined with the need for gutter discharge capacity necessary for high flow situations.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In this invention there is provided a gutter for attachment to a building by flanges extending from the body of the gutter wherein precipitation falling in large or above average amounts and accumulated debris are allowed to overflow the gutter system. The system as described and disclosed under normal water flow situations also provides adequate capacity and distribution for precipitation from the house or structure.

In one embodiment, gutter sidewalls found in the vertical plane are a smooth and uniform continuation of the sidewalls of the gutter found in the horizontal plane. The transition of the horizontal portion of the gutter to the vertical portion is smooth and is continuous. Unlike the prior art disclosed and discussed, the transition portion of the gutter does not create a water pathway dead-end thereby restricting flow and allowing accumulation and deposition of debris. Additionally, the smooth transition of the gutter from horizontal planes to vertical planes does not restrict flow because the entrance to the vertical downspout does not act as an orifice, as found and disclosed in the prior art.

The invention is further improved as disclosed and described herein because the internal obstructions of the gutter system are minimized. There are no ninety (90) degree corners in the system presented herein wherein dirt, twigs or other debris may accumulate and reduce water flow rates. Additionally, the fastening system disclosed does not lay across the top of the gutter as found in the prior art. Instead, a bracket is disclosed to cup or hold the gutter externally without obstructing the interior portion of the gutter. A fastener is then applied to the sidewall portion of the gutter to attach the gutter to the bracket. It is preferred that this fastener be counter-sunk to further reduce the potential for obstruction of water or debris. Also there is no obstruction around the exit to the downspouts, thus allowing free fall of any debris, twigs, etc. It is contemplated that the gutter system as described can be built from a variety of materials including ferrous or non-ferrous metals which are traditionally used for gutters. The gutter system and method of producing same as described may be pre-cast or pre-fabricated prior to installation or may be constructed in the field as typically done in the field now with steel or aluminum gutters.

It is also contemplated that the present design as disclosed and claimed made be manufactured or extruded from any type of plastic which provides adequate structural integrity of the system along with improved corrosion resistance properties.

It is an object of the invention to provide seamless gutters that allow excess precipitation to exit the gutter system thereby preventing catastrophic failure or systemic degradation of the gutter system.

It is another object of the invention is to provide a gutter system that is inexpensive and easy to manufacture.

These and other objects of the invention will become apparent to one of ordinary skill in the art after reading the disclosure of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 shows overview of both the horizontal portion of the gutter system and with a vertical portion at each end;

FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view along line 2-2 as found in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view along line 3-3 as found in FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION—ELEMENT LISTING

Listing of ElementsElement #
Horizontal area of gutter1
Sidewall of gutter2
Bottom wall of gutter3
External fastener4
Top edge of gutter sidewall5
Fascia6
Bracket7
Topless Elbow8
Vertical area of gutter9

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 shows an overview of the gutter system as disclosed. Each end of FIG. 1 discloses different embodiments of the invention taught herein. The gutter system as described has a horizontal area 1 and a vertical area 9. The gutter system has both sidewalls 2 and bottom walls 3 to form a three-sided trough for the removal of water and debris. The top edge of the gutter sidewall 5 illustrates the three-sided open face nature of the gutter system.

The gutter system is supported by an externally mounted bracket 7. This bracket 7 is attached to the fascia 6 of the structure. The only intrusion of the mounting system upon the internal space and surfaces of the gutter system is through fastener 4 which pierces the sidewall of the gutter 2 and attaches the bracket 7 to the fascia 6. This fastener 4 is intended to be counter-sunk to further minimize its effect on the flow of the water and debris within the gutter system.

FIG. 2 provides a side view of one embodiment of the present invention. As can be seen from the FIGS. 1 and 2, the horizontal area 1 of the gutter system transitions smoothly to the vertical sections 9 through the topless elbow 8. Water and debris may flow over the bottom wall of the gutter system 3. The topless elbow 8 ensures substantially all the internal surface area, made up by the sidewalls 2 and bottom wall 3 of the gutter system, is available for water and debris to transition from the horizontal to vertical planes and exit the gutter system. This embodiment of the present invention allows the gutter system to be assembled in pre-fabricated parts.

FIG. 3 provides a side view of another embodiment of the present invention. As can be seen from the FIG. 1 and 3, the horizontal area 1 of the gutter system transitions smoothly to the vertical sections 9 through the pre-formed gutter structure. Water and debris may flow over the bottom wall of the gutter system 3. The embodiment as described functions to provide a smooth transition area for water and debris to exit the horizontal area 1 and enter the vertical area 9. This embodiment of the present invention requires the gutter system to be manufactured in a seamless, continuous manner as is commonly done by manufacturers and installers in this field.

Although not shown, another embodiment of the present invention would include an apparatus to substantially reduce rain gutter clutter by attaching an arcuate topless elbow having side walls and a bottom wall for attachment to and connection at the termination of the horizontal troughs and upper end of the vertical troughs affixed to a structure. Similar to the elbow 8 shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, this embodiment would affix to an existing gutter system to provide a continuous channel for water and debris to transition from the horizontal to vertical planes and exit said gutter system.

While the invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments, variations or modifications would be apparent to one of ordinary skill in the art without departing from the scope of the invention. Consequently, the appended claims should not be limited to their literal terms, but should be broadly construed in accordance with the scope of the invention, as described above.





 
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