Title:
Spring-Loaded, Multi-Compartment, Clothes Hamper
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A spring-loaded, multi-compartment, clothes hamper, with one or more compartments that have a spring-loaded base that is urged downward by the weight of clothing placed thereon.



Inventors:
Cox, Pamela L. (Christiansted, VI, US)
Application Number:
11/936490
Publication Date:
05/08/2008
Filing Date:
11/07/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45C11/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
VOLZ, ELIZABETH J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP (Philadelphia) (Philadelphia, PA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A clothes hamper comprising: a. a handle connected to a lid and a housing body; b. a lid connected to a housing body; c. rotating wheels connected to a housing body; d. springs within the housing body, wherein the springs are linked to flat plates; and e. compartments within the housing body, wherein clothes can be sorted.

2. A clothes hamper, comprising: a housing body having a base and sides; at least one compartment formed within the housing body; a flat plate situated within the compartment, the flat plate having a bottom and a top, the bottom having an urging mechanism connected thereto such that the flat plate is urged upward away from said base by said an upward urging force of said urging mechanism; and wherein the weight of items placed upon the top of said flat plate provide a force opposite to the upward urging force of the mechanism, thereby urging said flat plate downward a distance proportional to said weight of said urging mechanism.

3. The clothes hamper of claim 2, wherein said housing body has multiple compartments formed therein, each having a flat plate and urging mechanism as set forth in claim 2.

4. The clothes hamper of claim 3, wherein the urging mechanism comprises a spring situated between each flat plate and said base.

5. The clothes hamper of claim 3, wherein said urging mechanism include means for adjusting the upward urging force of said urging mechanism.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is based on, and claims priority to, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/857,273, filed Nov. 7, 2006, the entire content of which is hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a spring-loaded, multi-compartment, rolling clothes hamper for sorting laundry into the categories of darks, whites, and colors.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Conventional clothes hampers are made so that an individual has to bend down to retrieve the laundry from the hamper or pick up the laundry basket to load a washing machine. Conventional clothes hampers also have to be dragged or picked up to move them to a washing machine.

A need therefore exists for an improved clothes hamper that an individual does not have to drag, pick up, or bend to load a washing machine.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The invention answers this need by providing a spring-loaded, multi-compartment, rolling clothes hamper, for sorting laundry into the categories of darks, colors and whites.

It is thus an objection of the present invention to reduce stress of the back by providing a clothes hamper that requires no bending, dragging, or lifting to load laundry into a washing machine.

Further objects, features and advantages will become apparent upon consideration of the following detailed description of the invention when taken in conjunction with the drawings and the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The attached figures depict various embodiments of the invention.

FIG. 1 is a cross-sectional side view of a hamper in accordance with the present invention; and

FIG. 2 is a rear view of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 is a view of the front and the inside of the clothes hamper 10 according to the present invention, shown in a horizontal orientation as it would sit upon the floor. The clothes hamper 10 comprises a lid 12 connected to a housing body 14. A handle 16 is connected to the lid 12 and the housing body 14. Inside the housing body 14 there is a compartment for laundry consisting of darks 18, a compartment for laundry consisting of whites 20, and a compartment for laundry consisting of colors 22. Within each of the three compartments 18, 20, 22 there are flat plates 24, 26, 28. Below these flat plates 24, 26, 28, there are springs 30, 32, 34. On the bottom of the housing body 14 there are rotating wheels 36, 38, 40, 42.

When placing laundry into the darks 18, whites 20 or colors 22 compartment, the increase in weight lowers the spring 30, 32, 34. The spring tension may be adjustable using known techniques so that the user can adjust the amount of lowering to suit his/her needs and the type of clothing to be placed in each compartment (e.g., denim pants are heavier than polyester pants and thus the denim pants will lower the compartment base more quickly than polyester pants will). When retrieving laundry from the darks 18, whites 20 or colors 22 compartment, the decrease in weight raises the spring 30, 32, 34. An individual will be able to stand in the same upright position when retrieving laundry from the clothes hamper 10 and placing it into a washing machine.

When moving the clothes hamper 10 from one area to another, an individual can pull the clothes hamper 10 by the handle 16, using the rotating wheels 36, 38, 40, 42. The spring mechanism can be any spring mechanism used for urging flat plates 24, 26, and 28 upward when they are not under load. For example, spring mechanisms such as those used in restaurants for urging stacked plates upward as the top most plate is removed will function to serve the purpose of urging the flat plates upward.

FIG. 2 is a view of the back of the clothes hamper 44. The back of the clothes hamper 44 is perforated with ventilation holes 46 to aid in the control of mold, mildew and odor.

While this invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it is to be understood that variations and modifications can be affected within the spirit and scope of the invention as described herein and as described in the appended claims.