Title:
Methods and instructions for installing and removing a fabric conditioning article in a dryer
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Methods, and instructions thereof, for installing and removing a multiple use fabric conditioning article from a clothes dryer are provided.



Inventors:
O'brien, Janese Christine (Wyoming, OH, US)
Duderstadt, Jacqueline Marie (Cincinnati, OH, US)
Detzel, Gabrielle Holly Spangler (Cincinnati, OH, US)
Trinh, Toan (Maineville, OH, US)
Application Number:
11/890074
Publication Date:
11/29/2007
Filing Date:
08/03/2007
Assignee:
The Procter & Gamble Company
Primary Class:
International Classes:
D06C7/04
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
HARDEE, JOHN R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
THE PROCTER & GAMBLE COMPANY (CINCINNATI, OH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A method of installing a releasably affixed, multiple use, fabric conditioning article in a dryer comprising the step of operatively affixing the conditioning article to a engaging side of a dryer baffle of said dryer.

2. A method of installing a multiple use fabric conditioning article comprising the steps: (a) determining a rotation of a drum of a dryer as either clockwise or counterclockwise; and (b) operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the drum.

3. The method of claim 2, wherein the step of operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle comprising either: (a) affixing the article to the left side of the baffle, if the rotation of the drum is clockwise and provided that the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation in the drum; (b) affixing the article to the right side of the baffle, if the rotation of the drum is counterclockwise and provided that the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation in the drum.

4. The method according to claim 2, wherein the step of determining the rotation of the drum as either clockwise or counterclockwise comprises the steps of opening a door to the dryer while the dryer is in operation and observing the rotation of the drum.

5. The method according to claim 2, wherein the step of determining the rotation of the drum as either clockwise or counterclockwise comprises the steps of: (a) starting a dryer; (b) waiting from about one second to about ten seconds; (c) opening a door to the dryer while the dryer is in operation; and (d) observing the rotation of the drum.

6. The method according to claim 2, wherein the step of determining the rotation of the drum as either clockwise or counterclockwise comprises the step of extracting information from a database which provides drum rotation on a dryer manufacturer and/or model basis.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims benefit to the following U.S. Non-Provisional patent application Ser. No. 11/059,101 filed Feb. 16, 2005, the disclosures of which are all hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is directed to methods, and instructions thereof, for installing and removing a fabric conditioning article in a dryer.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Dryer-added fabric conditioner products provide a better convenience to the consumer as compared to the rinse-added fabric conditioner products because they spare the consumer the requirement of having to be present right at the beginning of the rinse cycle.

There are two main types of dryer-added fabric conditioner products, namely, single use product and multiple-use products. Single use products, most commonly in the sheet form coated with a fabric conditioning composition, calls for adding a single sheet into an automatic clothes dryer containing a wet laundry load, at the beginning of the drying cycle. Examples of this type of product are disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,442,692 to Gaiser and U.S. Pat. No. 3,686,025 to Morton et al.

Multiple use fabric conditioning products are placed in the interior of the dryer to release the fabric conditioning component to successive laundry loads. Each multiple-use product lasts many drying cycles, from a few cycles to about 50 or more cycles, and thus provides a better convenience to the consumer than single use products. The multiple-use product can either be an unattached article that is added to an automatic clothes dryer and is tumbled along with a wet laundry load, or an article that is attached (releasably or otherwise) to the interior of an automatic dryer drum. An example of an unattached Jul. 11, 1972 to Hewitt et al. An example of a releasably affixed fabric conditioning article is described in US 2003/0192197 A1.

Releasably affixed multiple use fabric conditioning products provide the advantage inter alia of multiple uses without having to be replaced after each load. Releasably affixed articles also provide a better convenience than single use products or unattached multiple use products because the consumer does not need to search for the product after each drying cycle. However, a problem facing products that are releasably affixed in the interior of a dryer, is how to place them inside the dryer, and instructing users the same, for optimal results and high consumer satisfaction. The problem is further compounded, at least in the United States, by roughly half of dryers spinning clockwise while the other half spinning counterclockwise.

This is particularly problematic given the multitude of different dryers commercially available. Therefore, there is a need for methods, and instructions thereof, for installing a dryer multiple use fabric conditioning articles in a dryer.

Another problem associated with releasably affixed multiple use fabric conditioning article is removing it from the dryer after having expired or when no longer needed or wanted, particularly when it is releasable affixed with an adhesive. Indeed these adhesive must be strong enough to hold the article through multiple dryer cycles and withstand forces applied to the article by the dryer drum rotating as well as wet laundry contacting the article during a drying cycle. Therefore there is a need to provide a method and instructions for use to remove a releasably attached multiple use fabric conditioning article from the inside surface of a dryer after the article has expired or when it is no longer wanted or needed.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention addresses these needs by providing methods, and instructions thereof, for installing a dryer block in an automatic clothes dryer.

One aspect of the invention provides for a method of installing a releasably affixed, multiple use, fabric conditioning article in a dryer comprising the step of operatively affixing the conditioning article to an engaging side of a dryer baffle of the dryer.

Another aspect of the invention provides for a method of installing a multiple use fabric conditioning article comprising the steps: (a) determining a rotation of a drum of a dryer as either clockwise or counterclockwise; and (b) operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the drum.

Yet another aspect of the invention provides for a method of installing a multiple use fabric conditioning article in a clothes dryer comprising the step of determining whether a dryer baffle is substantially flat or substantially non-flat.

Yet still another aspect of the invention provides for a method of removing a fabric conditioning article from an inside surface of a dryer, wherein said fabric conditioning article is affixed to the inside surface by an adhesive, comprising the steps: (a) operating the dryer to heat the adhesive; and (b) prying the fabric conditioning article to remove the article from the inside surface of the dryer.

Another aspect of the invention provides for a kit comprising: (a) a multiple use fabric conditioning article; and (b) an instruction for using said article according to any of the previously described methods.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a substantially flat baffle.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a substantially flat baffle with ridges.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a substantially non-flat baffle.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a hump fin.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a dryer with a multiple use fabric conditioning article releasably attached to a baffle of the drum of the dryer.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Definitions:

“Adhesive” is used herein the broadest sense to include any adhesive that is suitable for use in a dryer to releasably attach a multiple use fabric conditioning article. Non limiting examples of adhesives include: resin adhesives, latex; hotmelts, thermoplastic adhesives, acrylics, vinyl acetates, natural and synthetic rubbers, natural and synthetic gums, polysiloxanes, polyacrylates, ethylene/vinyl acetate copolymers, polyvinylpyrrolidones, vinylpyrrolidone copolymers and particularly vinyl pyrrolidone/vinylacetates, styrene block copolymers, natural or synthetic polysaccharides, cellulose materials, and mixtures thereof. Suitable suppliers of adhesives include 3M and National Starch. A non-limiting specific example of adhesive is the double-sided tape, part number 4084, commercially available from 3M.

“Baffle” is used herein to describe a lifter or fin located on a drum inside a dryer, and can be integral or non-integral to the drum. Baffles are usually made of plastic, ceramic, metal, or a combination of these materials, but typically plastic is used. Baffles have at least an engaging side and a non-engaging side. A barrel typically comprises at least one baffle, often at least two, if not three baffles. As explained in further detail, which side of the baffle is the engaging side will depend on the rotational direction of the drum (i.e., clockwise or counterclockwise). The engaging side is the leading side of the baffle as the drum rotates and will engage or lift wet laundry as the dryer operates. Baffles can be divided into two types: (i) a substantially flat baffle; or (ii) a substantially non-flat baffle. Generally a flat baffle is typically non-integral to the drum whereas a non-flat baffle can be either integral or non-integral to the drum. A flat baffle comprises an engaging side that is substantially flat, however may comprise small ridges. Non-flat baffles typically have a substantially concave and/or substantially convex surface. Generally the substantially concave surface comprises the engaging side of the non-flat baffle. Some non-flat baffles are “V-shaped.”

An example of a substantially flat baffle is illustrated in FIG. 1, and can be found, e.g., in the following dryer brands and models: Whirlpool® LER4634 J, Kenmore® 62802, Kenmore®& 64942, Maytag® SDE2606, and Fridigaire® GLER331AS2. FIG. 1 is from the viewpoint of a user looking inside the dryer into the drum 10 illustrating a perspective view of a baffle 15, wherein the baffle is a flat baffle, which is non-integral to the drum 10.

FIG. 2 is also from the viewpoint of a user looking inside the dryer into the drum 10 illustrating a perspective view of a baffle 15, wherein the baffle comprises a flat baffle further comprising ridges 40. A flat baffle with ridges can be found, for example, in Maytag® Model MD6000.

FIG. 3 is also from the viewpoint of a user looking inside the dryer into the drum 10 illustrating a perspective view of a baffle 15, wherein the baffle 15 comprises a non-flat baffle that is V-shaped. A typical V-shaped baffle comprises an engaging side 25, wherein the engaging side comprises two substantially flat surface moieties 45 connected to each other, wherein the connection therebetween forms an angle typically from about 130° to about 175°, preferably from about 145° to about 165°. A fabric conditioning article 5 can be placed on either surface moiety 45 of the engaging side 25, however the surface moiety 45 nearest the dryer door is preferred. An example of a non-flat or V-shaped baffle is illustrated in FIG. 3, and can be found, e.g., the following models of GE® brand dryers: DBXR463ED1WW and DBXR463EB.

“Hump fin,” in contrast to a “baffle,” is used herein to describe a fin that is generally semi-cylindrical in shape that fails to provide a suitable surface upon which to releasably affix a multiple use fabric conditioning article. A hump fin can be made from a variety of materials but is made typically of metal. Referring to FIG. 4, a hump fin 5 is typically an extension of the drum 10 its self (e.g., a uniform piece of the drum 10). An example of a hump fin is illustrated in FIG. 4, and can be found, e.g., in Roper® model REX4634KQ2. In one embodiment, releasably affixing the fabric conditioning article to the hump fin is avoided.

“Dryer” means any type of clothes dryer that uses heat and agitation to remove water from the laundry. An exemplary dryer includes a tumble-type dryer where the laundry is provided within a rotating drum that causes the laundry to tumble during the operation of the dryer. In one embodiment, the dryer is a non-stackable dryer. In another embodiment, the dryer is a front loading dryer. In yet another embodiment, the dryer is a one designed for home use (opposed to an industrial setting).

“Fabric” refers to any textile or fabric material that is laundered, e.g., garment.

“Fabric conditioning composition” means a composition that comprises at least a fabric conditioning component, and preferably a carrier component, that is preferably substantially solid (e.g., gel), even more preferably solid, at room temperature (e.g., at about 23° C.). The fabric conditioning component provides fabric conditioning properties to laundry such as, but not limited to fabric softening, freshness, and/or antistatic. The fabric conditioning component refers to any substance known in the art that is dispensed to laundry in the dryer that imparts a desired property. Other fabric conditioning components and other optional ingredients may include one or more of: a sanitizer, deodorizer, odor control agent, soil repellant, soil release agent, dye-transfer inhibitor, dye fixative agent, chlorine scavenging agent, chelant, fiber protecting polymer, fiber smoother, antimicrobial agent, fungicide, antioxidant, preservative, insect repellent, moth repellent, UV light absorber, optical brightener, wrinkle control agent, processing agent, and/or mold release agent.

The carrier component mixes with the fabric conditioning component and helps the fabric conditioning component resist transfer to laundry by melting during the drying operation. The carrier component is chosen so that the fabric conditioning composition exhibits a melting point or softening point that is above the operating temperature of the dryer. In most dryer operations, this means that the melting temperature of the fabric conditioning composition is above about 90° C. The melting temperature or the softening temperature of the fabric conditioning composition can be above about 95° C., above about 100° C., above about 110° C., or above about 120° C. The melting temperature of the fabric conditioning composition can be below 200° C., below about 180° C., or below about 170° C.

The melting temperature of the fabric conditioning composition, if a carrier component is present, refers to the temperature at which the composition begins to flow under its own weight. As the fabric conditioning composition reaches its melting point, one will observe the composition undergoing a transfer from a solid discreet mass to a flowable liquid. Although a differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) measurement of the composition may reveal that certain portions or phases of the composition may exhibit melting at temperatures that are within the operating temperatures of a dryer, it should be understood that what is meant by the melting temperature of the composition is not the melting temperature of certain portions or phases within the composition, but the melting temperature of the composition as demonstrated by the composition being visibly observed as a flowable liquid. It is expected that the fabric conditioning composition may be provided as a solid mixture including multiple phases or as a solid solution including a single phase.

The softening temperature of the composition refers to the temperature at which the solid mass becomes easily deformable. For many exemplary compositions according to the invention, it is expected that the softening temperature will be a few degrees below the melting temperature.

Non-limiting examples of suitable fabric conditioning compositions are described in U.S. Appl. Pub. 2003/0195130 A1 published Oct. 16, 2003 to Lentsch et al., and any continuation-in-part applications thereof.

“Fabric conditioning article” is used herein the broadest sense to include at least either: (i) an article comprising a fabric conditioning composition; or (ii) a docking member for an article comprising a fabric conditioning composition. Preferably the fabric conditioning article is one that is a multiple use fabric conditioning article and that is releasably affixed to the inside or interior surface of a dryer. In one embodiment, a releasably affixed fabric conditioning article is one that is operatively and/or releasably affixed to the inside surface of a dryer, preferably a baffle of a drum of the dryer. A preferred example of a releasably affixed multiple use fabric conditioning article is disclosed in U.S. Pat. Appl. Publ. No. 2003/0192197 A1 published Oct. 16, 2003 to Griese et al. This patent application discloses a product dispenser system comprising a docking member (referred to as “dispenser”) that is releasably affixed to an inner surface of a clothes dryer, a fabric conditioning composition (referred to as “product”) that is attached to a composition carrier (referred to as “product carrier”), wherein said composition carrier is operatively connected to the docking member. Suitable docking members and/or composition carriers are described in U.S. Provisional Appl. Nos. 60/555,950, filed Mar. 3, 2004; and 60/555,860, filed Mar. 3, 2004. For purposes of clarification, the term “releasably affixed” encompasses those embodiments of fabric conditioning article with or without a docking member (or dispenser). The side of the fabric conditioning article that is in contact with the bulk of the fabric conditioning composition may be flat or have a smooth, arced or dome-like shape. Other suitable shapes are described in U.S. Prov. Appl. No. 60/550,6690, filed Mar. 5, 2004. A suitable fabric conditioning composition for use in the present invention is described in U.S. Pat. Appl. Publ. No. 2003/0195130 A1 published Oct. 16, 2003 to Lentsch et al. In use, the fabric conditioning article is attached to the inside or interior surface of a dryer and a wet laundry load is tumbled in the presence of said article while being dried in order to receive the conditioning benefits. After drying, the laundry is removed but the article is left in place and is ready for the next load of wet laundry for drying.

“Multiple use,” in the phrase “multiple use fabric conditioning article,” means the fabric conditioning article may be used to deliver a desired amount of a fabric conditioning component to laundry during at least two cycles for drying laundry, preferably at least about 10 cycles, more preferably at least about 20 cycles, even more preferably at least about 30 cycles, yet more preferably at least about 40 cycles, and again even more preferably at least about 50 cycles, alternatively at least about 60 cycles, before the fabric conditioning article needs to be replaced.

Methods of Installing a Fabric Conditioning Article

One aspect of the invention provides for a method of installing a releasably affixed, multiple use, fabric conditioning article in a dryer comprising the step of operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the dryer. FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a dryer with a fabric conditioning article 5 releasably attached thereto. The dryer 1, is shown having a drum 10 and baffles 15. In this embodiment, the baffle 15 is a flat baffle. The drum 10 is shown having counterclockwise direction of rotation 20. The baffles 15 have at least an engaging side 25 and a non-engaging side 30. The term “engaging side” 25 is used herein to define the surface of the baffle 15 that engages the drying laundry as the drum 20 rotates. The engaging side 25 is intended to lift or scoop the laundry (not shown) during a drying cycle. The non-engaging side 30 of the baffle is the side opposite of the engaging side 25. The non-engaging side 30 may make contact with the laundry during dryer operation but such contact is less frequent and/or less direct as the laundry tumbles through the barrel 20 during the drying cycle. As can be seen in FIG. 5, the direction of rotation 20 of the drum 10 will dictate what side of the baffle 15 is the engaging side. Lastly, the lowest elevation point 35 of the barrel 10 is shown.

It should be appreciated that a user can typically readily identify the lowest elevation point 35 given the barrel's 10 proximity to the floor while a user is typically viewing the barrel, that forms the inside surface of the dryer 1, from an elevated perspective such as in a standing or even a bent-over position. Therefore, a user can usually observe the surface of the barrel 10 that is closest to the floor in the most comfortable or natural position, whereas the lowest elevation point 35 merely describing the lowest point (relative the floor) of said surface. This is contrast to an upper surface of the barrel where a user would be forced, for example, to kneel down and insert and turn their head in the dryer to observe the upper surface. This may result in discomfort, specifically perhaps neck and knee pain, which may be particularly true for elderly users. The present invention is based, in part, upon the surprising discovery that if the fabric conditioning article is placed on the engaging side a baffle, there may be demonstrated a greater efficacy of administering of the fabric conditioning component to fabric, and/or less lint collected and/or visible on the article during the life of the product, as compared to being placed on the dryer door or on the non-engaging side of the baffle, of the fabric conditioning component on per dryer cycle basis over the course of multiple dryer cycles. Without wishing to be bound by theory the greater efficacy may be attributed to a better contact of the softener active block with the garments to be treated. Without wishing to be bound by theory, mitigating the collection of lint on the article over repeated dryer cycles may also provide an enhanced ability of the article to administer the fabric conditioning component given the physical barrier that the accumulation of lint may pose (i.e., by interfering with the ability of laundry to directly contact the surface of the fabric conditioning composition of the fabric conditioning article). In one embodiment, the efficacy is increased from about one percent to about ten percent, in another embodiment, from about five percent to about twenty percent.

One aspect of the invention provides for a method of using a releasably affixed, multiple use, fabric conditioning article in a dryer comprising the step of operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the dryer to provide for more consistent delivery of a conditioning component to fabric in a dryer during dryer operation. Yet another aspect of the invention provides for a method of using a releasably affixed, multiple use, fabric conditioning article in a dryer comprising the step of operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the dryer to minimize the accumulation of lint on said article during dryer operation.

One aspect of the invention provides a method of installing a multiple use fabric conditioning article comprising the steps: (a) determining a rotation of a drum of a dryer as either clockwise or counterclockwise; and (b) operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the drum.

Drums of dryers typically rotate either clockwise or counterclockwise. There are at least two ways of determining the rotation of a drum of a dryer. A first way of determining drum rotation comprises the steps of opening a door to the dryer while the dryer is in operation and observing the rotation of the drum. The duration of the dryer operating need only be long enough for the user to observe the rotation of the barrel upon opening the door of the dryer before the safety features of the dryer bring the barrel to a stop. In one embodiment, the duration is between one second and ten seconds. In one embodiment, the step of determining the rotation of a drum of a dryer comprises the steps of: (a) starting a dryer, preferably an empty dryer; (b) waiting from about one second to about ten seconds; (c) opening a door to the dryer while the dryer is in operation; and (d) observing the rotation of the drum.

A second way of determining drum rotation comprises the step of extracting information from a database, which provides drum rotation on a dryer manufacturer and/or model basis. The phrase “extracting information from a database” is used herein the broadest sense to include information that is available in a leaflet, flyer, insert or on packaging or on the Internet. The information is preferably presented in a manner that facilitates the user to look up drum rotation based upon the user's dryer manufacturer and/or model including, but not limited to, a data table or text searchable database.

After a determining whether drum rotation is clockwise or counterclockwise, the user, in one embodiment, from the perspective of looking inside the dryer, may operably affix the fabric conditioning article to the engaging side of a baffle of the drum of the dryer by either: (i) affixing the article to the left side of the baffle, if the rotation of the drum is clockwise and provided the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation point in the barrel; or (ii) affixing the article to the right side of the baffle, if the rotation of the drum is counterclockwise and provided the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation in the drum.

Another aspect of the invention provides for a method of installing a fabric conditioning article comprising the step of determining whether a baffle is substantially flat or substantially non-flat. A user may determine whether the baffle is flat or non-flat by comparing the user's baffle in question to illustrations or pictures or written descriptions of known flat or non-flat baffles.

Another way of determining whether a baffle is flat or non-flat comprises the step of extracting information from a database, which provides whether a baffle is flat or non-flat on a dryer manufacturer and/or model basis. The phrase “extracting information from a database” is used herein the broadest sense to include information that is available in a leaflet, flyer, insert or on packaging or on the Internet. The information is preferably presented in a manner that facilitates the user to look up type of baffle based upon the user's dryer manufacturer and/or model including, but not limited to, a data table or text searchable database.

In another embodiment, the method of installing a fabric conditioning article comprises the additional step of operatively affixing the article to an engaging side of a baffle of the drum.

One way of determining whether the drum rotation in a dryer is either clockwise or counterclockwise, or which is side of a baffle is the engaging side, is to determine the location of a dryer's lint screen. This method is particularly useful when the baffle is a substantially flat-baffle. To this end, some generalities on the drum rotation can be made based upon the location of the lint screen of a dryer. For example, to date essentially all non-stackable dryers for home use rotate clockwise when the lint screen is located inside the dryer, typically immediately at the threshold between the door to the dryer and the barrel. These dryers are typically known in the industry as axial flow dryers. In contrast, a drum typically rotates counter clockwise when the lint screen is located outside the dryer, typically on the top of the dryer near the control panel. These contrasting dryers are typically known in the industry as cross flow dryers.

Thus, one additional step in a method of installing a fabric conditioning article may comprise determining whether access to a lint screen is either inside the dryer or outside the dryer. If the user determines that the access to the lint screen is outside the clothes dryer, the method, in another embodiment, may comprise the additional step of operatively affixing the conditioning article at the right side of the substantially non-flat fin, provided the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation in the drum. In contrast, if the user determines that the access to the lint screen is inside the clothes dryer, the method, in yet another embodiment, may comprise the additional step of operatively affixing the conditioning article at the left side of the substantially non-flat fin, provided the baffle is substantially at or near the lowest point of elevation in the drum.

Methods of Removing a Fabric Conditioning Article

One aspect of the invention provides for a method of removing a fabric conditioning article from an inside surface of a dryer, wherein said fabric conditioning article is affixed to the inside surface by an adhesive, comprising the steps: (a) operating the dryer to heat the adhesive; and (b) prying the fabric conditioning article to remove the article from the inside surface of the dryer. In one embodiment, the fabric conditioning article is a releasably affixed, multiple use fabric conditioning article. In another embodiment the inside surface of the dryer is chosen from an engaging side of a baffle, non-engaging side of a baffle, door, baffle. In a preferred embodiment, the inside surface of the dryer is the engaging side of a baffle. In yet another embodiment, the adhesive is double-sided tape high adhesive. In still another embodiment, the fabric conditioning article comprising at least a docking member, wherein the docking member is affixed, preferably releasably affixed, to the inside surface of the dryer by an adhesive.

Another aspect of the invention provides for the use of heat from operating a dryer to help pry a releasably attached multiple use fabric conditioning article from the inside surface of a dryer, wherein the article is releasable attached to the inside surface by an adhesive.

The present invention is based on the surprising discovery that a user is able to more easily remove a fabric conditioning article that is adhesively attached to the dryer by heating the adhesive by the operating the dryer for a short duration. Without wishing to be bound by theory, the heat of the dryer brings the adhesive closer to its transition temperature thereby providing less peel strength for the user to overcome in removing the article. In one embodiment, the dryer need only be operated from about one minute to about ten minutes, preferably two minutes to about eight minutes, preferably four minutes to about six minutes, preferably five minutes. In yet another embodiment, the dryer is operated on a high temperature setting, preferably a “cotton setting.”

There are many ways of prying the fabric conditioning article from the inside surface of the dryer. However, the user should be mindful of not damaging (e.g., scratching) the surface of the dryer. In some application, simply using fingers or a hand will be enough to remove the article. In one embodiment, a tool may be used, preferably a non-metal tool, more preferably a tool comprising plastic or a plastic coating, preferably a tool with a flat and thin part, to pry the article from the inside surface of the dryer. A non-limiting example of a prying tool includes a plastic spatula. In one embodiment, a metal tool is avoided. In one embodiment, the fabric conditioning article comprises a docking member, wherein the docking member comprises a slot (e.g., slit, nitch or opening) to receive a tool for prying the docking member from the inside surface of the dryer. In yet another embodiment, the docking member provides an indicium of where a tool should be inserted from prying.

The method of removing a fabric conditioning article, in one embodiment, further comprises the step of removing adhesive residue from the inside surface of the dryer. The adhesive residue may be removed by using a detergent, preferably a mild detergent such as DAWN®, and/or using an alcoholic solvent, preferably rubbing alcohol or ethyl alcohol. Using a clean, soft rag, with scrubbing is preferred. In another embodiment, the method further comprises the step of avoiding re-attaching the fabric conditioning article that was removed.

Kit with Instructions

One aspect of the invention provides for a kit comprising: (a) a fabric conditioning article; and (b) instructions for conducting any one of the previously described methods. Instructions may be placed in the package as pamphlet, printed on the packaging, or printed on the fabric conditioning article, or the shrinkwrap that may cover the article. In one embodiment, the instructions are found in a flyer separate from the packaging of the fabric conditioning article. In yet another embodiment, the instructions are provided from the Internet. In yet another embodiment, the instruction is operatively affixed to a surface on the dryer, provided the surface is one that can be seen by a user. The set of instructions can comprise pictures and/or icons. The instructions can be in one language, e.g., English, or can be multilingual.

The disclosure of all patents, patent applications (and any patents which issue thereon, as well as any corresponding published foreign patent applications), and publications mentioned throughout this description are hereby incorporated by reference herein. It is expressly not admitted, however, that any of the documents incorporated by reference herein teach or disclose the present invention.

Except as otherwise noted, the articles “a,” “an,” and “the” mean “one or more.”

All percentages stated herein are by weight unless otherwise specified. It should be understood that every maximum numerical limitation given throughout this specification will include every lower numerical limitation, as if such lower numerical limitations were expressly written herein. Every minimum numerical limitation given throughout this specification will include every higher numerical limitation, as if such higher numerical limitations were expressly written herein. Every numerical range given throughout this specification will include every narrower numerical range that falls within such broader numerical range, as if such narrower numerical ranges were all expressly written herein.

While particular embodiments of the present invention have been illustrated and described, it would be obvious to those skilled in the art that various other changes and modifications can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. It is therefore intended to cover in the appended claims all such changes and modifications that are within the scope of this invention.