Title:
Single piece toilet scrubber/plunger device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
This single piece device (the “Splunger”) performs the function of a toilet plunger and a toilet scrubber. It can be used to clean a toilet and clear a plugged toilet. However, the unplugging mechanism is different from toilet plungers currently in use. The later uses air to push the plug out of the way. The Splunger primarily uses water pressure to clear the plug. The Splunger is of simple design and consists of a handle affixed to a specially shaped porous sponge or spongy material. The handle made of durable material that is either rigid or slightly flexible, and is slightly flanged at the sponge end to permit strong adhesion to the sponge and prevent rips. The end of the sponge nearest the water is slightly cupped to enable cupping of water so that a downward thrust of the device will increase water pressure and push the plug down the drain. Sponge is made of strong, durable and porous material to allow for scrubbing, quick drainage and low water retention. The sides of the sponge flare out from the water end of the sponge and are tapered with the outer edge wavy or toothed to permit better scrubbing of the sides of the toilet and up under the rim. The flared sides fold back when the Splunger is pushed down the toilet drain, permitting a tight fit without losing freedom of movement.



Inventors:
Moore, Kevin George (Alpharetta, GA, US)
Application Number:
11/725408
Publication Date:
10/18/2007
Filing Date:
03/19/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E03D11/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, TUAN N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Kevin G. Moore (Alpharetta, GA, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A combination toilet scrubber and plunger in a single-pieced device, a “Splunger”, wherein comprising: a durable sponge or sponge-like material shaped to fit snugly into a standard toilet bowl or other sized toilet bowls, and said sponge to be shaped with straight sides that flare out and are tapered from the center out, and said sponge to be firmly affixed to an elongated handle to form a single-pieced device that can be used to both unplug and scrub clean a toilet bowl;

2. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 1, wherein said sponge is attached to the flared end of the handle, and is made of strong, durable and porous sponge-like material to allow for scrubbing, quick drainage and low water absorption/retention;

3. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 2, wherein the sides of the sponge are flared and tapered to permit them to fold back when the Splunger is pushed down the toilet drain, permitting a tight fit, but freedom of movement;

4. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 3, wherein the sides of said sponge are flared and tapered with the outer, narrow edge of sponge shaped in a wavy or toothed manner to permit better scrubbing of the sides of the toilet and up under the toilet rim;

5. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 4, wherein the end of the sponge is slightly cupped to enable a cupping of water at the plunging end of the sponge to increase the use of water pressure upon the downward thrust of the Splunger;

6. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 1, wherein said handle component is made of strong, durable material, either rigid or slightly flexible, and is long enough to permit use of the tool without being too close to the water;

7. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 6, wherein the bottom end of the handle that is connected to the center of the inside of the sponge is enlarged in a bulbous manner to improve the strength and durability of the connection, and to improve the effectiveness of the plunger action in pushing water and the plug down and out of the toilet drain;

8. The combination scrubber/plunger, the Splunger, as described in claim 1, wherein the sponge component may be constructed in such a manner as to be detachable from the afore-described handle component to permit the replacement of the sponge component while re-using the more durable handle component.

Description:

REFERENCES CITED [REFERENCED BY]

U.S. Patent Documents
7114211October 2006Elster
6859951March 2005Spreitzer
6804839October 2004McMaster
6694559February 2004Sloan
6446792September 2002Kaniaris, Jr.
6405385June 2002Smith
6368457May 2002Brown
6367621April 2002Johnson
6367621April 2002Johnson
6305047October 2001Armaly, Jr., et al
5971141October 1999Shafik
5440775August 1995Banks
5335374August 1994Wilk, et al
5114006May 1992Wilk
4967441November 1990White
4847923July 1989Huang
3599263August 1971Cheiten
2738529March 1956Bernet
2697842December 1954Meyer

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to toilet plungers, toilet brushes, and combination toilet brushes/plungers and pertains to a new single-piece combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger.

2. Description of the Prior Art

The use of combination brushes/plungers is known in prior art. Though the designs are varied, all rely on a rubber-like plunger forcing trapped air to clear the toilet plug and a separate brush or brush component for cleaning.

Known prior art includes U.S. Pat. No. 6,804,839.

While these prior inventions fulfill their respective objectives and requirements, none achieve the dual function of clearing and cleaning the toilet with the same single device, nor do they rely on sponge movement and increased water pressure to clear the plug.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The general functional purpose of the present invention, the Splunger, is to provide a novel, new single-piece combination toilet scrubber/plunger device that is not anticipated, described, encompassed, implied, rendered obvious, or suggested by any prior art combination brushes/plungers, either as separate devices or in any combination. The herein-described invention includes a novel and new handle with sponge assembly that is used as a single-piece device to unplug and/or scrub a toilet. The novel, new functional mechanics of this single piece device includes utilizing the sponge downward movement and water pressure created by a downward thrust of the Splunger device into standing water in the toilet bowl to push the plug down and away. No prior art includes the combination of physical components and mechanics that is offered by this present invention.

This present invention, the Splunger, is not limited to the details of construction and precise design of the components set forth as claimed, described, or illustrated herein. This invention may be constructed and produced in various ways without straying outside the scope of this invention. In addition, the terms, phrases, and specifications presented herein are not strictly limiting and are primarily used for descriptive purposes.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a novel and new combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device. This new invention has many of the advantages of all prior art plus new novel advantages and benefits that result in a novel and new combination toilet scrubber/plunger device that is not anticipated, described, encompassed, implied, rendered obvious, or suggested by any prior art combination brushes/plungers, either as separate devices or in any combination.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a new combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device in one convenient single-piece device that can be stored easily.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a new combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device in one convenient single-piece device that is easy to use and requires no set up for each use.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a new combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device in one convenient single-piece device that eliminates the need for a device that provides a piece for plunging and another piece for cleaning or scrubbing.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a new combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device in one convenient single-piece device that does not rely on trapping air as part of its mechanics of unplugging a plugged-up toilet.

These objects of the invention, together with any and all of its novel features which characterize this invention, are described with particularity in the claims included with and provided as part of this disclosure. Additional descriptive language and drawings of this invention accompany this disclosure and are incorporated by reference herein.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

To provide better understanding of this invention, additional description is detailed in the following drawings annexed hereto, which are incorporated by reference herein.

FIG. 1 is a side view of the new, single-piece combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 is top view of the new, single-piece combination toilet brush (scrubber)/plunger device according to the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

With reference to the afore-stated drawings, specifically to FIGS. 1 and 2, a new and novel combination toilet brush(scrubber)/plunger embodying the principles and concepts of the present invention and generally designated by the reference term “Splunger” will be described.

As illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, the combination toilet brush(scrubber)/plunger device, the “Splunger,” consists of two components, the handle component A, and the sponge component C, which are attached together in a conventional manner, either permanently or in such a manner as to permit periodic replacement of the sponge component.

The handle component A is slightly flared at the end that is inserted into the sponge, as illustrated at FIG. 1 area B, to permit stronger adherence and more effective plunging action. In addition, it is made of durable material and is either rigid or slightly flexible.

The sponge component C, as illustrated at FIG. 1 area D, is attached to the flared end of the handle, and is made of strong, durable and porous material to allow for scrubbing, quick drainage and low water absorption/retention.

The bottom of sponge component C that is opposite the handle insertion point is permanently covered with durable, dense material and is slightly cupped to aid in trapping water, as illustrated at FIG. 1 area E.

The outside edge of sponge component C is serrated or waved to assist in scrubbing hard to reach areas, as illustrated at FIG. 1 area F.

To use the Splunger to clear or unplug a stopped up toilet, the user would ensure some water is in the toilet bowl. The user would place the bottom portion of the sponge component C into the water and thrust firmly and quickly downward with handle component A several times until the water drained. In the event that only a little water is available, the user could flush the toilet once while thrusting the plunger downward as afore-described. To use the Splunger to scrub or clean the toilet, the user would rub, twist, turn, or scrub the Splunger firmly against the surface of the toilet that the user desires to clean, utilizing cleaning solutions if desired.

The simplicity of design of the Splunger leaves significant judgment to the user to determine the particular manner of usage and operation of this novel invention, as is apparent from the above description. Therefore, no further discussion relating to manner of usage and operation will be provided.

The above description is considered to be illustrative only of the new and novel principles of the combination scrubber(brush)/plunger device. Since manufacturing skill and expertise may determine that numerous suitable and appropriate modifications may be needed to effect these principles, the above description, including FIGS. 1 and 2, is not intended to limit this invention exactly as specified. Changes or variations in materials, shape, size, form, function and manner of assembly and/or use are not novel and new and are readily apparent and obvious to one skilled in the art. All necessary, appropriate and suitable modifications, substitutions, and equivalents may be utilized, within the scope of this invention.





 
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