Title:
Refrigerator and Freezer Unit
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A refrigerator and freezer unit has a throughgoing inner container, which forms a freezer compartment trough and a chilled goods trough which are integrally connected to one another in a flexurally rigid manner without any joining line or kinking edge, and an evaporator (9) seated on the freezer compartment trough (6). A wound box evaporator which surrounds the freezer compartment trough peripherally on four sides is provided as the evaporator.



Inventors:
Jendrusch, Holger (Ochsenhausen, DE)
Laube, Viktor (Ochsenhausen, DE)
Schmid, Eugen (Mettenberg, DE)
Wiest, Matthias (Hattenburg, DE)
Siegel, Didier (Steinhausen, DE)
Application Number:
11/794382
Publication Date:
10/30/2008
Filing Date:
12/27/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
62/515
International Classes:
F25D11/02; F25B39/02
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Primary Examiner:
BAUER, CASSEY D
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DILWORTH & BARRESE, LLP (WOODBURY, NY, US)
Claims:
1. A refrigerator and freezer unit comprising a throughgoing inner container (5), which forms a freezer compartment trough (6) and a chilled goods trough (7) which are integrally connected to one another in a flexurally rigid manner without a joining line or kinking edge, as well as an evaporator (9) seated on the freezer compartment trough (6), wherein a wound box evaporator which surrounds the freezer compartment trough (6) peripherally on four sides is provided as the evaporator (9).

2. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein the evaporator (9) is arranged seated firmly in a shape-matched manner on the freezer compartment trough (6).

3. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein the evaporator (9) is bonded to the freezer compartment trough (6), is in particular connected to the freezer compartment trough (6) by a two-sided adhesive tape or a two-sided adhesive film.

4. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein plates, in particular metal plates, are arranged between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the evaporator (9) and the evaporator windings (10) are arranged on them.

5. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

6. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein the opening cross-section of the freezer compartment trough (6) is offset backwardly to the rear of the appliance with respect to the chilling compartment trough (7).

7. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1, wherein it is configured as a one-door appliance.

8. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 2, wherein the evaporator (9) is bonded to the freezer compartment trough (6), is in particular connected to the freezer compartment trough (6) by a two-sided adhesive tape or a two-sided adhesive film.

9. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 2, wherein plates, in particular metal plates, are arranged between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the evaporator (9) and the evaporator windings (10) are arranged on them.

10. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 3, wherein plates, in particular metal plates, are arranged between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the evaporator (9) and the evaporator windings (10) are arranged on them.

11. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 8, wherein plates, in particular metal plates, are arranged between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the evaporator (9) and the evaporator windings (10) are arranged on them.

12. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 2, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

13. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 3, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

14. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 4, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

15. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 8, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

16. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 9, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

17. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 10, wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

18. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 11 wherein a gap (8) whose thickness is only slightly larger than the thickness of the evaporator windings (10) is provided between the freezer compartment trough (6) and the chilled goods trough (7).

19. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 2, wherein the opening cross-section of the freezer compartment trough (6) is offset backwardly to the rear of the appliance with respect to the chilling compartment trough (7).

20. A refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 3, wherein the opening cross-section of the freezer compartment trough (6) is offset backwardly to the rear of the appliance with respect to the chilling compartment trough (7).

Description:

The present invention relates to a refrigerator and freezer unit comprising a throughgoing inner container, which forms a freezer compartment trough and a chilled goods trough which are integrally connected to one another in a flexurally rigid manner without any joining line or kinking edge, and an evaporator seated on the freezer compartment trough.

Such refrigerator and freezer units comprising a throughgoing inner container, which are usually configured as one-door appliances, have advantages in a plurality of respects. Since no separation of the freezer compartment is provided, no dirt-collection edge arises between the freezer compartment and the chilled goods container. A much better appearance can be achieved with respect to refrigerator and freezer units comprising a separated inner container or a separate freezer compartment trough. In addition, with such refrigerator and freezer units comprising a throughgoing inner container, no complex and/or costly sealing measures have to be carried out on the installation of the evaporator.

To the extent that the throughgoing inner container are made flexurally rigid in such appliances in the transition region between the freezer compartment trough and the chilled goods trough, the installation of the evaporate proves to be difficult due to tight space conditions. Only a small gap frequently remains between the freezer compartment trough and the chilled goods trough. As a rule, a U-shaped plate evaporator has therefore previously been used in such appliances with a throughgoing inner container, said U-shaped plate evaporator being pushed over the freezer compartment trough from the rear in the manner of a clip so that the evaporator contacts it on the back wall and two oppositely disposed side walls of the freezer compartment trough. The cooling capacity of such an arrangement is, however, limited.

To achieve a more efficient freezer compartment cooling, the one-part, throughgoing construction of the inner compartment was occasionally sacrificed to be able to use more efficient evaporators. It has in particular already been proposed to provide a separate sheet metal box as the evaporator trough around which evaporator pipes were wound which were subsequently adhesively covered by an aluminum tape. This prefabricated box can be installed on the freezer compartment previously separated from the chilled goods container, with a splash frame then, however, being required for the installation and sealing of the freezer compartment and installation edges remaining visible in the inner container. This solution has therefore also been unsatisfactory in this respect to date.

It is therefore the underlying object of the present invention to provide an improved refrigerator and freezer unit of the initially named kind comprising a throughgoing inner container which achieves a more efficient cooling of the freezer compartment such that the advantages of a refrigerator and freezer unit comprising a throughgoing inner container are associated with a more efficient freezer compartment cooling.

This object is solved in accordance with the invention by a refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with claim 1. Preferred aspects of the invention are the subject of the dependent claims.

In accordance with the invention, a wound box evaporator is therefore provided as the evaporator which surrounds the freezer compartment trough peripherally on four sides irrespective of the difficult space and installation conditions with a throughgoing inner container having a freezer compartment trough connected to the chilled goods trough in a flexurally rigid manner. In contrast to the previously used U-shaped plate evaporators, the wound box evaporator extends peripherally around four sides of the freezer compartment trough, including the side of the freezer compartment trough which is disposed opposite the chilled goods trough and is only separated from it by a narrow gap. A considerably higher efficiency can thereby be achieved. A much better freezer compartment performance results, even without a fairly expensive compressor, by which a higher climate rating can be achieved. The invention thus for the first time breaks down the prejudice that only a specific type of evaporator, in particular a U-shaped plate evaporator, can be used with a refrigerator and freezer unit comprising a throughgoing inner container in which the integrally molded freezer compartment trough is connected to the chilled goods trough in a flexurally rigid manner. Thanks to the wound evaporator box provided in accordance with the invention, the present invention combines the advantages of a refrigerator and freezer unit comprising a throughgoing inner container with a highly efficient freezer compartment cooling.

The evaporator is advantageously arranged on the freezer compartment trough in a firmly seated manner. The evaporator can so-to-say be seated on the freezer compartment trough in a light press-fit so that a full contact is achieved between the freezer compartment trough and the winding coils of the evaporator seated thereon in a shape-matched manner and an accordingly more favorable heat transfer is achieved.

In a further development of the invention, the evaporator is adhesively bonded to the freezer compartment trough. The wound box evaporator can in particular be connected to the freezer compartment trough by an adhesive tape adhering on both sides or by a corresponding adhesive film. Such an adhesive tape adhering on both sides, on the one hand, effects a good, heavy-duty connection, and, on the other hand, it avoids the setting time which frequently has to be observed with other adhesives.

The wound evaporator pipes of the wound box evaporator can generally be seated directly on the freezer compartment trough. Advantageously, however, plates, in particular metal plates are arranged between the freezer compartment trough and the pipe winding of the evaporator and the evaporator winding is applied thereto. The inner sides of the plates are advantageously adhesively bonded to the freezer compartment trough of the inner container in the previously described manner. The metal plates between the evaporator winding and the freezer compartment trough ensure a full-area heat transfer from the freezer compartment trough.

The refrigerator and freezer unit is in particular configured as a one-door appliance wherein the appliance door extends both beyond the chilled goods container and the freezer compartment. In this connection, the opening cross-section of the freezer compartment can be rearwardly offset with respect to the chilled goods container, i.e. toward the rear side of the appliance. The gap between the freezer compartment trough and the chilled goods trough in such an appliance type can extend over less than ⅘ of the inner container depth.

The invention will be explained in more detail in the following with respect to an embodiment and to associated drawings. There are shown in the drawings:

FIG. 1: a schematic perspective overall view of a refrigerator and freezer unit in accordance with an embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2: a perspective side/rear view of the inner container of the refrigerator and freezer unit of FIG. 1 which shows the wound box evaporator which is seated on the freezer compartment trough of the inner container; and

FIG. 3: a frontal view of the inner container of the refrigerator and freezer unit of the preceding Figures.

FIG. 1 shows a one-door refrigerator and freezer unit 1 in which an appliance door 2 extends over the total frontal side and covers both a chilled goods container 3 and a freezer compartment 4. As FIG. 1 shows, the freezer compartment 4 is substantially smaller than the chilled goods container 3 in a manner known per se and is arranged in a lying manner over the latter.

As FIG. 2 and FIG. 3 show, the refrigerator and freezer unit 1 has a throughgoing inner container 5 which is manufactured from plastic in a suitable method. The inner container 5 is made integrally in one piece and comprises both the freezer compartment trough defining the freezer compartment 4 and the chilled goods trough 7 bounding the chilled goods container 3. As FIG. 2 shows, the freezer compartment trough 6 is only separated from the chilled goods trough 7 by a gap 8 which is roughly as thick as a hand, with it, however, being connected integrally in one piece to the chilled goods trough 7. The opening cross-section of the freezer compartment trough 6 is, as FIG. 2 shows, offset backwardly to the rear from the open front side of the inner container 5. The said gap 8 between the freezer compartment trough and the chilled goods trough 7 extends only approximately over ⅔ to ¾ of the depth of the inner container 5. With this design of the inner container 5, the freezer compartment trough 6 is connected to the chilled goods trough 7 in a flexurally rigid manner, i.e. it cannot be bent away or kinked away to widen the gap 8 for the purpose of the evaporator installation. The gap 8 is, however, sufficiently thick to receive the evaporator windings.

As FIG. 2 shows, a wound box evaporator 9 is seated with a precise fit and in a shape-matched manner on the freezer compartment trough 6 which is peripherally multilaterally surrounded by the windings 10 of the evaporator 9. In the embodiment drawn, only the rear wall of the evaporator trough is not covered by the wound evaporator 9. The evaporator 9 can cool the freezer compartment highly efficiently due to the multilateral surrounding of the evaporator trough.

As FIG. 2 shows, the wound evaporator 9 comprises a plurality of winding coils which can comprise bent aluminum piping. Advantageously, metal plates, not visible in the drawing and on which the windings 10 of the evaporator 9 are arranged, are seated between the freezer compartment trough 6 and the windings 10 of the evaporator 9. The said metal plates are fixedly bonded to the walls of the freezer compartment trough 6 by means of adhesive tape adhering on both sides. The windings 10 of the evaporator 9 can likewise be bonded to the said metal plates in the named manner. It is understood that such a metal plate can be arranged on each of the four sides of the freezer compartment trough 6 which are surrounded by the evaporator 9.

The evaporator 9 can in particular be a so-called four-star evaporator with a wound evaporator box system which is installed on the freezer compartment trough 6 of a throughgoing inner container 5 of a one-door refrigerator unit with a freezer compartment. A separation of the freezer compartment from the inner container is advantageously avoided by this arrangement. The throughgoing container does not have any joining line and also does not have any bending edge between the freezer compartment trough 6 and the chilled goods trough 7 so that no dirt-collection edge can arise and a better appearance is achieved. In addition, the advantage is achieved that no complex and/or expensive sealing measures have to be carried out on the installation of the evaporator or of the evaporator box system on the inner container 5. In addition, the evaporator 9 is not visible from the inner space of the appliance. In summary, it can be said that a highly efficient evaporator is provided using cost-favorable components without disadvantages for the user.