Title:
Toddler Urinal
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A flushable toddler urinal comprising a housing having a front basin for receiving urine, a top opening, and a front opening located under the front basin, a removable water talc assembly, a waste tray slidably received in the front opening, and an adjustable mount assembly removably attached in a back surface of the housing for adjusting the height of the toddler urinal.



Inventors:
Zeeb, Scott (Chicago, IL, US)
Hauflaire, Marcia (Palos Park, IL, US)
Eiger, Aaron B. (Chicago, IL, US)
Anthony, Philip (Chicago, IL, US)
Rote, Scott J. (New Lenox, IL, US)
Application Number:
11/587877
Publication Date:
03/06/2008
Filing Date:
04/29/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47K11/00; A47K11/12; E03D5/016
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
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20070011807Commode lifting and transporting deviceJanuary, 2007Hamilton
20080134427Grating for a swimming poolJune, 2008Lawson
20020178495Bathtub protection deviceDecember, 2002Verdugo
20090019627DUAL FLUSH VALVE REFILLJanuary, 2009Le et al.
20080010739Curved shower curtain rod assemblyJanuary, 2008Barrese
20070044261SCRUBBER MATMarch, 2007Bolton
20050241061Bathing bag for bedridden patientsNovember, 2005Copeland



Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, TUAN N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GREER, BURNS & CRAIN, LTD (CHICAGO, IL, US)
Claims:
1. A toddler urinal comprising: a plastic housing having a front basin integrally molded in the housing with an integrated drain, and a front opening located under said front basin; a removable one-piece molded plastic waste tray slidably received in said front opening below said drain; and a water tank assembly connected to said housing, said water tank assembly comprising a flush reservoir mounted to said housing above said basin and a fresh water reservoir removably placed above said flush reservoir.

2. The toddler urinal of claim 1 further comprising an adjustable mount assembly comprising a frame mount attached to said housing, a floor mount and a wall mount, said frame mount adapted to alternately receive one of said floor mount and said wall mount, for adjusting the height of the toddler urinal.

3. A toddler urinal comprising: a housing having a front basin for receiving urine, said basin having a drain, a waste tray removably held by said housing below said drain; and a height adjusting assembly including a frame mount attached to the housing and adapted to alternately receive one of an adjustable floor mount and an adjustable wall mount.

4. A toddler urinal as in claim 3, wherein said height adjusting assembly includes a push button device for selectively changing the height of the basin.

5. A flushable toddler urinal comprising: a housing having a front basin for receiving urine and a drain from said basin; a water tank assembly connected to said housing, including a flush reservoir and a removable fresh water reservoir, said fresh water reservoir having a volume that is at least twice the volume of said flush tank reservoir; and a waste tray slidably received in said housing below said drain.

6. The flushable toddler urinal of claim 5 wherein said flush reservoir is mounted to said housing above said basin and said fresh water reservoir is removably placed above said flush reservoir.

7. The flushable toddler urinal of claim 5 wherein said fresh water reservoir includes a valve assembly for automatically releasing a predetermined volume of water into said flush reservoir.

8. The flushable toddler urinal of claim 5 wherein said further comprising a diverter connected to said water tank assembly above said front basin for receiving water from said tank assembly and diverting it across a surface of said basin.

9. A flushable toddler urinal comprising: a housing having a front basin for receiving urine with a drain, and a front opening located under said drain; a flush reservoir mounted to said housing above said basin, said flush reservoir having a flush valve; a fresh water reservoir removably placed on said flush reservoir, said fresh water reservoir having a valve for automatically releasing a predetermined amount of water from said fresh water reservoir into said flush reservoir; a waste tray slidably received in said front opening of said housing below said drain; and an adjustable mount assembly attached to said housing for adjusting the height of said front basin.

10. A flushable toddler urinal as in claim 9 further comprising a diverter adjacent the top of said basin and receptive of water from said flush reservoir for diverting water across said basin.

11. A flushable toddler urinal as in claim 9, wherein said fresh water reservoir holds a sufficient amount of water for multiple flushes.

12. A toddler urinal comprising: a plastic enclosed housing having a front inner basin for receiving urine; an emptying spout on a top of the housing for emptying urine from said housing; and an adjustable mount assembly removably attached to said housing for adjusting the height of the toddler urinal.

13. The toddler urinal of claim 12 wherein said adjustable mount assembly comprises a frame mount attached to said housing, a floor mount and a wall mount, said frame mount adapted to alternately receive one of said floor mount and said wall mount.

14. A toddler urinal comprising: a housing having a front basin for receiving urine, the basin having a drain; a target in the front basin; and a waste tray slidably received in said housing below said drain.

15. The toddler urinal of claim 14, further comprising at least one of a lamp, a sound maker, a display, or voice or sound recorder configured for receiving and playing back pre-recorded messages, said lamp, sound maker, display or recorder being activated when said target is hit.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to potty-training devices for young male toddlers and, more specifically, relates to a toddler urinal that aids in training young male toddlers to urinate while standing up.

Potty-training devices for training young children to use a toilet are well known in the art. However, many current devices are designed to simulate a conventional toilet, and teach both male and female toddlers to urinate in the seated position. Although convenient for female toddlers, these devices can be inconvenient and difficult for male toddlers, because the standard toilet bowls are often too high for the toddlers to reach without a stepstool, or the deflectors used for boys to urinate while sitting down make it difficult for a male toddler to properly use. Recently, the concept of a toddler urinal to foster training has been introduced into the market but all attempts have had significant deficiencies.

Applicant's earlier U.S. Pat. No. 5,822,804, which is hereby incorporated by reference, attempted to solve this problem. The '804 patent discloses a portable male toddler urinal that simulates a conventional urinal. Although the toddler urinal of the '804 patent solved some of the problems in the art, there exists a need for an improved flushable toddler urinal.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present toddler urinal includes means for adjusting the height of the urinal to meet the needs of a growing male toddler. The height of the present toddler urinal can be easily adjusted without the use of any tools. The present adjustable toddler urinal can either be mounted to a wall or stably supported on the floor, depending on the training needs of the parent. Further, the toddler urinal is preferably flushable.

Specifically, the present flushable toddler urinal includes a housing having a front basin for receiving urine, a top opening, and a front opening located under the front basin, a removable water tank assembly, a waste tray slidably received in the front opening, and an adjustable mount assembly removably attached to a back surface in the housing for adjusting the height of the toddler urinal.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the present flushable toddler urinal with an adjustable floor mount;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a back view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a side view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 1:

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 4 taken along the line 5-5;

FIG. 5a is a perspective view of the frame mount of FIG. 5;

FIG. 5b is a perspective view of the frame mount of FIG. 5a with the latch detached from the frame mount;

FIG. 5c is a back view of the frame mount of FIG. 5a;

FIG. 6 is a back view of the flushable toddler with an attached wall mount;

FIG. 7 is a front view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 1 in a non-flush position;

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view of the water tank assembly of FIG. 7 taken along the line 8-8;

FIG. 9 is a front view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 1 in a flush position;

FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional view of the water tank assembly of FIG. 9 taken along the line 10-10;

FIG. 11 is an exploded perspective view of the fresh water reservoir of FIG. 2;

FIG. 12 is an exploded view of the spring loaded cap of FIG. 11;

FIG. 13 is a cross-sectional view of the fresh water reservoir of FIG. 1 taken along the line 13-13;

FIG. 14 is a semi-exploded perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the flushable toddler urinal;

FIG. 15 is a front view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 14 in a non-flush position;

FIG. 16 is a cross-sectional view of the water tank assembly of FIG. 15 taken along the line 16-16;

FIG. 17 is a front view of the flushable toddler urinal of FIG. 14 in a flush position;

FIG. 18 is a cross-sectional view of the water tank assembly of FIG. 17 taken along the line 18-18;

FIG. 19 is a perspective view of another alternate embodiment of the toddler urinal;

FIG. 20 is a perspective view of yet another alternate embodiment of the toddler urinal having an emptying spout on a top of the urinal;

FIG. 21 is a partially exploded view of the urinal of FIG. 20;

FIG. 22 is a front view of the urinal of FIG. 20;

FIG. 23 is a cross-sectional view of the urinal of FIG. 22 taken along the line 23-23; and

FIG. 24 is a perspective view of still yet another embodiment of the flushable toddler urinal having an interactive apparatus in the housing of the urinal.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, the present flushable toddler urinal is provided and generally designated 10. The flushable toddler urinal 10 includes a housing 12 having a front basin 14 for receiving urine, a top opening 16, and a front opening 18 located under the front basin, a removable water tank assembly 20, a waste tray 22 slidably received in the front opening, and an adjustable mount assembly 24 removably attached to a back surface 26 of the housing for adjusting the height of the toddler urinal.

The front basin 14 includes a drain 28 having a plurality of holes for transmitting urine from the front basin into the waste tray 22. Although a plurality of holes are shown in the drain 28, one or more slots or other apertures could instead be provided.

Shown in FIGS. 2, 3 and 5, the adjustable mount assembly 24 includes a frame mount 30 secured in a recess 32 in the back surface 26 of the housing 12, and an adjustable mount 33 slidably received in the frame mount. The back surface 26 of the housing 12 further includes a spring-loaded release 46, shown in FIGS. 2-6. Shown in FIGS. 5a-5c, the frame mount 30 includes an interior surface 34 abutting against and attached to recess 32 by a plurality of screws 35 which are inserted into a plurality of openings 37 in the frame mount and threaded into corresponding openings in the recess (not shown). The frame mount 30 includes a latch mount 36 in the interior surface 34 for receiving a latch 38 received by a spring 39, and a pair of sidewalls 40 wherein each sidewall includes a channel 42. The adjustable mount 33 can be one of either a floor mount 33a, shown in FIG. 3, or a wall mount 33b, shown in FIG. 6. By providing both the floor mount 33a and the wall mount 33b, the urinal 10 can be used in several locations and on several types of surfaces. However, it is appreciated that other mounting options are possible, as are known in the art.

The adjustable mount 33a or 33b includes a plurality of notches 44 facilitating height adjustment, best shown in FIG. 5. The latch 38 is removably received by one of the plurality of notches 44 and is stably held in place for as long as is desired. An adjustment means 48 can also be provided and can include either the floor mount 33a or the wall mount 33b. The adjusting means 48 can further include the latch 38 received in the latch mount 36, wherein the latch is received by one of the plurality of notches 44 and is engaged by the spring-loaded release 46 when the adjusting means 48 is in operation, shown in FIG. 5.

The adjusting means 48 facilitates the height adjustment of the urinal 10 in the same manner described above. However, these concepts are meant as examples and not as limiting in scope. Although the latch 38 and notches 44 height adjustment mechanism is utilized in the present urinal 10, it is appreciated that other mechanisms for height adjustment are available, as are known in the art, and could be used in place of the latch-notch mechanism.

Referring to FIG. 5, in order to adjust the height of the urinal 10, the spring-loaded release 46 is pushed and engages the latch 38, which releases the latch from its corresponding one of the plurality of notches 44 and allows the adjustable mount 33a or 33b to be slid up or down, depending on the needs of the toddler. When the desired height is reached, the spring-loaded release 46 is let go, allowing the latch 38 to engage the corresponding one of the plurality of notches 44 that is located at the desired height. It is contemplated that because the adjustment process does not require the use of tools, the urinal 10 can easily and quickly be adjusted to the proper height for the toddler. Although only one process for adjusting the height of the urinal 10 is provided herein, it is appreciated that other height adjustment processes are available, as are known in the art.

Shown in FIG. 2, one embodiment of the water tank assembly 20 includes a flush tank reservoir 50 mounted in the top opening 16 and a removable fresh water reservoir 52 positioned on top of the flush tank reservoir. This arrangement allows for easy assembly and disassembly of the urinal 10, and also allows the components to be easily cleaned. However, it is recognized that other arrangements or components are possible, as are known in the art.

The flush tank reservoir 50 includes a chamber 54 having a base 56 and a flush valve assembly 58, as shown in FIGS. 2, 8 and 10. The chamber 54 is designed to contain water released from the fresh water reservoir 52 during the operation of the urinal 10. The flush valve assembly 58 includes a flush valve guide 60, a spring 62, a valve stem 64 located within the flush valve guide, a valve head 66 connected to the valve stem, and a funnel 68 located beneath the flush valve assembly. Preferably, a diverter 96 is attached to the flush valve assembly bottom portion and extends into the front basin 14 (FIGS. 2 and 7-10). The flush valve assembly 58 is designed to transmit water contained in the chamber 54 to the front basin 14, which will be described in detail below.

Referring to FIGS. 2 and 11, the fresh water reservoir 52 includes a semi-cylindrical top portion 70 and a generally flat base portion 72. Although a semi-cylindrical shape is shown in this embodiment, it is appreciated that other shapes are available and could be used instead. The semi-cylindrical top portion 70 includes an integrated handle 74, a generally centrally located opening 76, and a push button assembly 78 mounted in the opening. The push button assembly 78 includes a flush actuator, namely a push button 80, and a rod 82. The push button assembly 78 is aligned with the valve stem 64.

Shown in FIGS. 11-13, the flat base portion 72 of the fresh water reservoir 52 includes a generally centrally located through hole 84 for receiving the button assembly 78 and an externally threaded opening 86 for receiving fresh water. The opening 86 threadably receives an internally threaded cap 88 having an O-ring 89 and a valve assembly 87 including a generally centrally located valve guide 90, a spring 91, a valve stein 92 and a valve head 93, shown in FIG. 12.

To activate the flushing capabilities of the present urinal 10, the fresh water reservoir 52 first needs to be filled with water. The fresh water reservoir 52 is removable from the housing 12 so that it can be carried to a sink or other water source. The cap 88 is removed from the circular opening 86 for filling. After replacing the cap 88, the fresh water reservoir 52 can be placed over the flush tank reservoir 50. When the fresh water reservoir 52 is in place, the cap valve stem 92 engages a projection 94 on chamber base 56 (FIGS. 2, 11, 12), opening the cap valve slightly and allowing the water to flow from the fresh water reservoir 52 into the chamber 54. At this point, the urinal 10 is ready for use. Although one method of filling the chamber 54 of the flush tank reservoir 50 has been described, it is appreciated that other methods are available, as are known in the art.

After the male toddler has urinated into the front basin 14, he can flush the urinal 10 by pressing the push button 80. When the push button 80 is pressed, shown in FIG. 10, the rod 82 will engage the valve stem 64, causing the valve head 66 to move downward, opening the valve and allowing water to flow out of the flush tank 50, through the funnel 68 and into the front basin 14. The water will then rinse off the urine remaining in the front basin 14. Preferably, the water passes through the optional diverter 96 and is spread uniformly throughout all sides of the front basin 14. It is contemplated that the diverter 96 allows the water to thoroughly rinse the urine off of the front basin 14 and into the waste tray 22. However, it is appreciated that other devices and assemblies could be used to rinse the front basin 14. The water and urine will travel through the drain 28 and into the waste tray 22, completing the flushing process. Although one method of flushing the toddler urinal 10 has been described, it is recognized that other flushing methods are available, as known in the art.

Accordingly, a two-stage flush is provided. The first flush stage occurs when the fresh water reservoir 52 is placed over the flush tank reservoir 50, causing the threaded cap valve stem 92 to engage the projection 94 of the flush tank chamber base 56, opening the cap valve and facilitating transfer of the volume of fresh water front the fresh water reservoir to the flush tank chamber 54. The second flush stage is shown in FIGS. 7-10, and occurs when engagement of the push button 80 causes the rod 82 to engage the valve stem 64, facilitating transfer of the fresh water from the fresh water reservoir 52 into the front basin 14. Although specific first and second stage flushing mechanisms with particular valve assemblies have been shown and described, the mechanisms and assemblies are meant as examples and not as limiting in scope. It is appreciated that other mechanisms for flushing and alternative valve assemblies are available, as are known in the art, and could be used in place of the flush mechanisms disclosed.

The fresh water reservoir preferably has a volume that is at least twice the volume of the flush tank reservoir, so that the present flushable urinal 10 can be flushed at least twice and preferably several times before the reservoir 52 needs to be refilled or the waste tray 22 needs to be emptied. When the waste tray 22 does need to be emptied and cleaned, it can easily be slid out of the front opening 18, emptied, and slid back into the front opening when ready for use.

To further aid in the ease of emptying and cleaning the components of the urinal 10, the waste tray 22 is provided with an integrated handle 98, best shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, which can easily be gripped to pull out or push in the waste tray. However, it is appreciated that other types of handles are available, as are known in the art.

It is also contemplated that because the urinal 10 is manufactured from a durable plastic, as is known in the art, the waste tray 22 and other components of the urinal can easily be cleaned or washed without experiencing wear. However, it is appreciated that other materials are available that provide similar durability and ease of cleaning properties.

Referring to FIGS. 14-18, an alternate embodiment of the urinal is provided and is generally designated 100. The urinal 100 includes the same components as the urinal 10, except that it includes a different embodiment of a removable water tank assembly, which is designated as 102.

The water tank assembly 102 includes a flush tank reservoir 104 inserted into the top opening 16 and covered by a fresh water reservoir 106.

The flush tank reservoir 104 includes a base 108 having a projection 110 and a recess 112, shown in FIGS. 16 and 18. When the fresh water reservoir 106 has been filled and placed over a top opening 111, a threaded cap valve stem 113 engages the projection 110 and is opened, allowing water to travel from the fresh water reservoir to the flush tank reservoir 104 until the flush tank reservoir is filled. However, it is appreciated that other methods for filling the flush tank reservoir 104 can be utilized, as are known in the art.

The recess 112 has a generally centrally located opening 114 and is configured for receiving a valve assembly 116 that includes a valve stem 118 and a valve head 120. The valve head 120 rests inside the recess 112 when the urinal 100 is not in use, as shown in FIG. 16, and acts as a seal, preventing water located in the flush tank reservoir 104 from entering the front basin 14. Also shown in FIG. 16 in the non-flush position, the valve stem 118 is received by and extends through the opening 114.

When the urinal 100 needs to be flushed, the user pushes down on a handle 122 located on the housing 12, shown in FIG. 17. As shown in FIG. 18, an internal latch 124 of the handle 122 opens the valve assembly 116 by engaging the valve stem 118, pushing the stem upward and removing the valve head 120 from the recess 112. As the valve assembly 116 is opened, the water contained in the flush tank reservoir 104 is released into the front basin 14, through a plurality of openings 125 rinsing the urine from the front basin. The urine and water are then transported through a drain 126 having a plurality of holes 128 in the housing 12 and into the waste tray 22. Although a drain 126 is featured in the urinal 100, it is appreciated that other apparatuses are available that would serve the same purpose, as are known in the art. Furthermore, it is appreciated that other flushing methods are available in addition to the handle flush method described above.

According to another embodiment of the toddler urinal, a lower-cost construction of the urinal can be provided and is generally designated 130. Shown in FIG. 19, the urinal 130 can include a plastic enclosed housing 132 having a front basin 134 for receiving urine with an integrated drain (not shown), and a front opening 136 located under the front basin, and a removable one-piece integrated waste tray 137 slidably received in the front opening. Alternately, the urinal 10 could also include an adjustable mount assembly 138, as shown in FIG. 19. After the urinal 130 has been used and the waste tray 137 is full, it can easily be emptied and cleaned by sliding the waste tray out of the front opening and emptying its contents into a sink or other similar apparatus. After the waste tray 137 has been emptied and cleaned, it is slid back into the front opening 136 and the urinal 130 is again ready for use. It is contemplated that if the urinal 10 contains less parts, it will cost less to manufacture and can therefore be sold at a lower retail price. However, it is appreciated that other arrangements may be available that would also lower the retail cost of the urinal 10.

Shown in FIGS. 20-23, yet another embodiment of the urinal can be provided, and is generally designated 140. It is contemplated that the urinal 140 displays the simplest construction of the toddler urinal. The urinal 140 includes the plastic enclosed housing 12 for receiving urine and the adjustable mount assembly 24 removably attached to the back surface 26 of the housing for adjusting the height of the urinal. In addition, the urinal 140 includes a front inner basin 142 and an emptying spout 144 on a top 146 of the housing 12, best shown in FIG. 22. The front inner basin 142 is deeper than previous embodiments of the urinal, and is designed to contain a larger volume of urine and water. When the urinal 140 needs to be emptied, it is simply carried to a sink or other draining apparatus and tipped over, allowing the urine and water to flow out of the emptying spout 144. It is contemplated that this arrangement is the simplest to manufacture and operate, and therefore could reduce the retail cost of the urinal 140. However, it is appreciated that other arrangements are available that could simplify the construction and use of the urinal 140.

Still another embodiment of the urinal is provided in FIG. 24 and is generally designated 160. The urinal 160 contains the same components and operates in the same manner as the urinal 10, but further includes an interactive device 162 designed to make potty training more enjoyable for the toddler. An example of the interactive device 162 includes a target 164 in the front basin 14, an LED display 165 and at least one light bulb 166 located on a front 168 of the housing 12.

Similar to the urinal 10, the toddler uses the urinal 160 by urinating into the front basin 14. However, the urinal 160 is designed to encourage the toddler to use the urinal by activating the interactive device 162 when the toddler properly uses the urinal. For example, if the toddler's urine stream hits the target 164 during urination, a score will appear on the LED display 165 and the at least one bulb 166 will be turned on, signifying that the toddler has done a good job. Every time the target 164 is hit, the score on the LED display 165 will increase. Alternatively, the device 162 could emit a noise or both light up and make a sound such as a whistle or a bell when the target 164 is hit. It is also appreciated that different sounds or lights could be emitted from the bulb 166 depending on the area of the target 164 that is hit. In addition, the interactive device 162 could be activated by voice or sound recognition. Furthermore, it is recognized that other types of interactive devices 162 could be used, such as a dartboard, through-hole target, or the like, and that the invention as claimed is not limited to those described herein.

It is contemplated that the interactive device 162 will provide an element of full to potty training, which is generally an arduous task for both parent and toddler alike.

While particular concepts of the flushable toddler urinal have been described herein, it will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that changes and modifications may be made thereto without departing from the invention in its broader aspects and as set forth in the following claims.