Title:
Screwless window treatment mounting bracket
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A pair of mounting brackets are disclosed which are readily removable but securely attached to any window frame, for the purpose of mounting a variety of window treatments in an aesthetic manner. The brackets are held in place by a traditional spring tension curtain rod. Each bracket is comprised of a base plate and an elongated mounting element oriented substantially perpendicular to the base plate. The mounting element is attached to the base plate by a connecting means and is adapted to receive a traditional curtain rod, substantially above the window and outside the periphery of the window frame. When in the closed position the window treatment covers the window, blocking any significant light and/or air draft from being transmitted into the building.



Inventors:
Nathan, Melvin A. (Newark, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/647814
Publication Date:
07/03/2008
Filing Date:
12/29/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
248/261
International Classes:
A47H1/102; A47H1/10
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
EPPS, TODD MICHAEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GREGORY SMITH & ASSOCIATES (NEWARK, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame, comprising: a left mounting bracket having an outer face, an inner face, and an elongated mounting element adapted for attaching a curtain rod; a right mounting bracket having an outer face, an inner face, and an elongated mounting element adapted for attaching a curtain rod; a tension rod having a first end coupled to said inner face of said left mounting bracket and a second end coupled to said inner face of said right mounting bracket; and wherein said left and right mounting brackets are held in corners on opposite sides of the window frame only by a force exerted by said tension rod, said left and right brackets are adapted for attachment to the window frame without a penetration of a surface of the window frame, and said left and right mounting brackets are adapted for effective attachment to a porous surface.

2. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 1, wherein: a position of said first end of said tension rod relative to two intersecting edges of said inner face of said left mounting bracket is adjustable; a position of said second end of said tension rod relative to two intersecting edges of said inner face of said right mounting bracket is adjustable; and a length of said tension rod is adjusted to provide an effective amount of force to prevent relative motion between said left and right mounting brackets and the window frame.

3. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 2, wherein said left mounting bracket and said right mounting bracket further comprise: a base plate comprising said inner face and said outer face, wherein said base plate is adapted for placement in an upper corner of the window frame and is further adapted for attachment to the window frame without a penetration of a surface of the window frame; and a support arm having a first end coupled to a front edge of said base plate and a second end coupled to said elongated mounting element.

4. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 3, wherein a right angle is formed between said support arm and said base plate.

5. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 3, wherein said elongated mounting element and said base plate are parallel.

6. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 3, wherein a vertical separation distance between said elongated mounting element and a top edge of said base plate and a length of said support arm and the value of said obtuse angle are selected to position said elongated mounting element above and outside the boundaries of the window frame when an upper surface of said base plate of said right mounting bracket and an upper surface of said base plate of said left mounting bracket both contact a same surface of the window frame on opposite sides of the window frame.

7. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 6, wherein a profile of said support arm is adapted to conform closely to a profile of the window frame.

8. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 6, further comprising a secondary bracket comprising an elongated mounting element and a mounting face parallel to said elongated mounting element, wherein said mounting face on said secondary bracket is coupled to said elongated mounting element on said support arm.

9. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 6, wherein said base plate has a selectable width.

10. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 8, wherein said base plate further comprises a plurality of removable tabs, said removable tabs extending from a top edge to a bottom edge of said base plate.

11. The device for mounting a window treatment and a curtain rod to a window frame of claim 9, wherein said base plate further comprises a plurality of removable tabs, said removable tabs extending from a top edge to a bottom edge of said base plate.

12. A device for mounting a window treatment to a window frame, comprising: A left mounting bracket comprising a base plate, a support arm, and an elongated mounting element, said base plate having a flat outer face and a flat inner face parallel to said outer face, said support arm coupled at a first end to a front edge of said base plate, said support arm coupled at a second end to said elongated mounting element, wherein said elongated mounting element is parallel to said base plate, a top edge of said support arm forms an obtuse angle with an edge at said first end of said support arm, and a length of said support arm and a value of said obtuse angle are selected to position said elongated mounting above and outside the boundaries of the window frame; A right mounting bracket comprising a base plate, a support arm, and an elongated mounting element, wherein said right mounting bracket has mirror-image symmetry with said left mounting bracket and said outer faces of said left and right mounting brackets are supported only by contact with opposite sides of the window frame; A tension rod having a first end coupled to said inner face of said left mounting bracket and a second end coupled to said inner face of said right mounting bracket, wherein said tension rod provides an effective amount of force to prevent relative motion between said left and right mounting brackets and the window frame; Wherein said left and right mounting brackets are held in position on opposite sides of the window frame only by a force exerted by said tension rod; and A curtain rod having a first end attached to said elongated mounting element on said left mounting bracket and a second end attached to said elongated mounting element on said right mounting bracket.

13. A device for mounting a window treatment to a window frame, comprising: a left mounting bracket comprising a base plate, a support arm, and an elongated mounting element, said base plate having a flat outer face adapted for attachment to the window frame without a penetration of the window frame and a flat inner face parallel to said outer face, said support arm coupled at a first end to a front edge of said base plate, said support arm coupled at a second end to said elongated mounting element, wherein said elongated mounting element is parallel to said base plate, and a vertical separation distance between said elongated mounting element and a top edge of said base plate and a length of said support arm are selected to position said elongated mounting element above and outside the boundaries of the window frame when an upper surface of said base plate of said left mounting bracket contacts an upper surface of the window frame; a right mounting bracket comprising a base plate, a support arm, and an elongated mounting element, said base plate having a flat outer face adapted for attachment to the window frame without a penetration of the window frame and a flat inner face parallel to said outer face, said support arm coupled at a first end to a front edge of said base plate, said support arm coupled at a second end to said elongated mounting element, wherein said elongated mounting element is parallel to said base plate, and a vertical separation distance between said elongated mounting element and a top edge of said base plate and a length of said support arm are selected to position said elongated mounting element above and outside the boundaries of the window frame when an upper surface of said base plate of said right mounting bracket contacts the upper surface of the window frame; and a tension rod having a first end coupled to said inner face of said left mounting bracket, wherein a position of said first end on said left mounting bracket inner face relative to a first and a second edge of said left mounting bracket inner face is adjustable, and a second end coupled to said inner face of said right mounting bracket, wherein a position of said second end on said right mounting bracket inner face relative to a first and a second edge of said right mounting bracket inner face is adjustable, and said left and right mounting brackets are held in corners on opposite sides of the window frame only by a force exerted by said tension rod.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This disclosure relates to a device for mounting a window treatment above a window. More particularly this disclosure relates to a mounting bracket for window treatments that is mounted or secured to the window frame being held in place by a readily available spring tension curtain rod and is able to be positioned to optimize the privacy and shielding effect of the window treatment.

BACKGROUND

Window treatments such as shades, blinds or curtains are hung from brackets that are either permanently affixed by fasteners such as screws or nails or temporarily affixed by tape or suction cups to an adjacent wall or window frame surrounding the windows to be covered. Screws or nails used to affix a bracket to a wall or window frame damage the wall or window frame when the fasteners and bracket are removed. Upon removal of the window treatment mounting brackets, the wall or window frame must be repaired.

Although temporary mounting brackets have been devised for quick installation and removal, some of these devices are not aesthetically pleasing. Some devices have bracket elements or suction cup assemblies that are in full view after placement of the window treatment. Other devices have bracket elements with suction cup assemblies that mount directly to the window pane. Some devices restrict window functionality by preventing opening of the window pane without first removing the window treatment mounting device. Devices using suction cup assemblies mounted directly upon the window pane do not account for geographic locations maintaining temperature extremes, leaving the suction cup device susceptible to failure and premature erosion at the hands of natural climactic changes.

Properly fitted against a window, window treatments insulate as well as provide privacy and achieve shielding of light while allowing functionality of the window pane. Some previously available mounting devices are not shaped to hold window treatments sufficiently close to window frames to impede airflow. A mounting bracket for window treatments should allow installation of shades or curtains easily and quickly so that the number of non-insulated windows may be covered without the need for mounting device removal in order to access the window. Other previously available removable mounting brackets are not constructed to securely hold window treatments for long term use. For example, some removable mounting brackets do not prevent lateral movement of the window shade or brackets. Lateral movement of the bracket makes it easier for the window shade or curtain to fall.

In light of our mobile and transient population, a need exists for a mounting means for window coverings that may be easily installed, easily removed and adaptable to accommodate windows of a variety of shapes and sizes currently existing in commercial and residential buildings. Such a device would permit change and variation of window treatments without the window frame and trim damage from mounting hardware associated with traditional bracket mounting installations. A mounting bracket that is easily installed and removed may be reused repeatedly in different locations, thereby eliminating the cost of new hardware for the installation of new window treatments at any location or upon reallocation of window treatments. The removable window treatment mounting device should hold the Window treatment as securely as a permanent mount, have the complete bracket mounting hidden from full view by the window treatment, and allow complete functionality of the window pane assembly.

SUMMARY

In one embodiment, a mounting system is provided for mounting shades and curtains securely to a window frame by using a pair of mounting brackets held in place by a spring tension curtain rod. The spring tension curtain rod, also referred to herein as a tension rod, exerts pressure to hold the mounting brackets securely in place against the window frame without the use of suction cups or mechanical fasteners such as screws, nuts, or bolts. In another embodiment, a plurality of easily removable tabs enable the brackets to be adjusted for numerous sizes of existing window frames.

In one embodiment, a bracket has an elongated mounting element outward of the periphery of the window frame such that the bracket is able to receive a traditional curtain rod above the window and window frame. By positioning the mounting bracket outside the periphery of the window and the window frame, the window treatment secured to the mounting bracket also extends outside of the periphery of the window and window frame. Thus, the window treatment will overlap the entire periphery of the window when the window treatment is drawn to the closed position. The portion of the window treatment that extends outward of the periphery of the window frame prevents light from entering the building and privacy is also increased.

A support arm couples the base plate to the elongated mounting element. In one embodiment, the shape of the support arm corresponds to the shape of the window frame with which it is to be employed so as to achieve an increased shielding effect, increased privacy protection and increased thermal insulation. The support arm in conjunction with the adjustability of the placement of the mounting brackets, allows for the window treatment to be placed close to the window frame further increasing light shielding, privacy and thermal insulation characteristics. Due to the coordination of the base plate, support arm, and mounting element, the mounting bracket provides a more secure apparatus to guard against lateral movement. The brackets can be easily and efficiently mounted and dismounted on a wide variety of window frame sizes and materials and the bracket will accommodate a variety of window treatments.

This section summarizes some features of the present embodiment. These and other features, aspects, and advantages of the embodiments of the invention will become better understood with regard to the following description and upon reference to the following drawings, wherein:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a front elevation view partially cut away of a window and window frame showing an embodiment having a left bracket and a right bracket coupled together with a tension rod.

FIG. 2 is a horizontal transverse sectional view of a metal casement window frame showing the position of a traditional curtain rod in relation to an embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 3 is a view of an embodiment of a bracket shaped to couple to the left side of a window frame (bracket marked ‘L’).

FIG. 4 is a view of an embodiment of a bracket shaped to couple to the right side of a window frame (bracket marked ‘R’).

FIG. 5 is a view of an exemplary embodiment of a bracket having five removable sections to adapt bracket width to window frames of various depths.

DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 illustrate an embodiment of a mounting bracket 10 for a traditional curtain rod 19 relative to a window 17 and window frame 15. The curtain rod 19 shown in FIG. 2 is exemplary of commercially available rods having apertures near the ends designed to be received by the bracket mounting elements 13 in FIG. 1.

The mounting bracket 10 comprises a base plate 11 to couple the mounting bracket 10 to the window frame 15 (as illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2) by means of a tension rod 14 pressing the base plate 11 securely against the window frame 15. The mounting bracket 10 also comprises an elongated mounting element 13. The mounting element 13 is oriented in a parallel plane to the base plate 11 and adapted to receive a traditional curtain rod 19 that extends above the window 17. A perpendicular support arm 12 couples the mounting element 13 to the base plate 11. The mounting element 13 is attached to the support arm 12 and extends vertically above the window. The base plate 11 is bent back at a ninety degree angle where the support arm 12 is attached and the mounting element 13 is bent forward at a ninety degree angle where it is attached to the support arm 12 thereby fitting around and in close proximity to the window frame 15.

The support arm 12 provides for the mounting element 13 to extend outside of the periphery of the window frame 15 such that the window treatment is positioned substantially above the window 17 and frame 15 as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2. The positioning of the mounting element outside of the periphery of the window and frame allows a curtain hanging from the curtain rod 19 to completely cover the window when the curtain is in a closed position. When closed, the curtain prevents any significant amount of light and air from passing from the exterior of the building to the interior of that building along the periphery of the window, thus increasing the light shielding effects, privacy protection and thermal insulation effects of the window treatment.

In one embodiment, the mounting brackets 10 are positioned close to the upper most portion of the window frame 15 with the base plate 11 held firmly in place against the window frame by the tension rod 14, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2. When positioned properly, there can be no movement horizontally or vertically thus ensuring the stability of the mounted window treatment even if the curtain is pulled to one side of the window. The pressure applied by the tension rod 14 to the base plate 11 of the mounting bracket 10 solves both of these problems. In an exemplary installation, the tension rod 14 is adjusted by placing one end against the window frame 15, allowing the other end to extend outside and one-half inch beyond the opposite window frame 15, then tightening a locking screw (not shown) on the locking mechanism for the tension rod 14. One end of the tension rod 14 is then placed against the very uppermost part of the window frame 15, and pressure is exerted on the tension rod 14 by depressing the opposite end and forcing it into the opposite side of the window frame 15 in a horizontal, level position. A mounting bracket 10 is then placed with the base plate 11 against the window frame 15 near the tension rod 14. The tension rod 14 is then depressed enough to allow the base plate 11 of the mounting bracket 10 to be moved up between the open end of the tension rod 14 and window frame 15. The tension rod 14 is then released so the pressure is applied against the base plate 11 of the mounting bracket 10 thereby holding it firmly in place. The same procedure is repeated to install the mounting bracket 10 on the opposite side of the window frame 15. The mounting brackets 10 now affixed in their proper position are ready to receive a curtain rod 19.

The left and right mounting brackets 10 are coupled to the sides of the window frame 15 by the pressure exerted by the tension rod 14, as previously explained. No screws, bolts, or nails penetrate the base plate 11 to hold the mounting bracket 10 against the window frame 15. The brackets are not coupled to the window glass and are located on the window frame so as not to interfere with parts of the window that tilt or slide when the window is opened or closed. The brackets will function effectively on window frames made of wood, metal, or plastic, and on window frames having porous or nonporous coatings such as plaster or paint. Furthermore, the stronger the spring force exerted by the tension rod 14, the wider the window or the heavier the window treatment that may be accommodated by the exemplary embodiments. This is in contrast to devices having brackets mounted with suction cups, which may not be attached to window frames composed of porous materials or having porous coatings, and in which the force exerted by a tension rod produces a torque on the brackets which tends to pull the suction cups away from the window.

The mounting bracket 10 may be made of metal, plastic or other material capable of withstanding environmental temperature variations and capable of resisting discoloration from exposure to light and moisture. In some embodiments, the bracket is formed as one piece. In other embodiments, the mounting bracket 10 is formed from separate pieces (base plate 11, support arm 12, and elongated mounting element 13) joined together.

In another embodiment, the base plate 11 of the mounting bracket 10 is adjustable in width to enable bracket placement in window frames of various depths. As shown in FIG. 5, a base plate 11 having adjustable width comprises a plurality of removable tabs 20. The tabs 20 are formed into an end of the base 10 opposite the attachment of the support arm 12. The tabs 20 are formed by any method that results in a plurality of parallel tabs that remain attached during use of the bracket after installation in a window frame but which may be easily separated from the base plate 11 before installation. A desired number of tabs are removed from the end of the bracket so that the resulting bracket width is less than or equal to the depth of the window frame at the desired mounting location. In an exemplary embodiment, the base plate 11 comprises five tabs, each tab having a width of about 0.25 inch.

In another embodiment, a secondary bracket 22 is coupled on one face to an elongated mounting element 13 on mounting bracket 10, as shown in FIG. 5. Secondary bracket 22 comprises an elongated mounting element 21. In an exemplary embodiment, the elongated mounting element 21 is separated from the elongated mounting element 13 on the mounting bracket 10 by about 0.75 inch and one face of the secondary bracket 22 is coupled to a side of elongated mounting element 13 by welding. In other embodiments the coupling between the mounting bracket 10 and the secondary bracket 22 is achieved by adhesive or by mechanical fasteners such as screws, bolts, or rivets. A mounting bracket comprising two elongated mounting elements permits the attachment of two separate curtain rods to enable a greater variety of window treatment combinations and effects. In an exemplary installation on a window having a width of less than four feet and window treatments weighing less than five pounds, the mounting brackets 10 are formed from metal having a thickness of at least twenty gauge. In other installations on windows having widths from four to eight feet or for heavier window treatments, heavier gauge material is used for the brackets together with a stronger tension rod, for example a tension; rod for shower curtains.

The present disclosure is to be taken as illustrative rather than as limiting the scope, nature, or spirit of the subject matter claimed below. Numerous modifications and variations will become apparent to those skilled in the art after studying the disclosure, including use of equivalent functional and/or structural substitutes for elements described herein, use of equivalent functional couplings for couplings described herein, or use of equivalent functional steps for steps described herein. Such insubstantial variations are to be considered within the scope of what is contemplated here. Moreover, if plural examples are given for specific means, or steps, and extrapolation between or beyond such given examples is obvious in view of the present disclosure, then the disclosure is to be deemed as effectively disclosing and thus covering at least such extrapolations.

Unless expressly stated otherwise herein, ordinary terms have their corresponding ordinary meanings within the respective contexts of their presentations, and ordinary terms of art have their corresponding regular meanings.