Title:
TOILET FLANGE
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present disclosure generally provides embodiments for a toilet flange. In an embodiment, the toilet flange includes a body having a toilet-facing surface, a drain-facing surface, and a drain opening therethrough and at least two chambers extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body, each chamber having a fastener passageway for receiving a portion of a first fastener for coupling the body to a toilet base.



Inventors:
Wood, Timothy J. (Wynantskill, NY, US)
Application Number:
14/852668
Publication Date:
01/28/2016
Filing Date:
09/14/2015
Assignee:
WOOD TIMOTHY J.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E03D11/16
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
LOEPPKE, JANIE MEREDITH
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Timothy J Wood (Wynantskill, NY, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A toilet flange comprising: a body having a toilet-facing surface, a drain-facing surface, and a drain opening therethrough; and at least two chambers extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body, each chamber having a fastener passageway for receiving a portion of a first fastener for coupling the body to a toilet base.

2. The toilet flange of claim 1, wherein the body has a poly-sided perimeter shape.

3. The toilet flange of claim 1, wherein the toilet-facing surface of the body includes a dam feature configured to prevent a fluid from escaping radially from a periphery of the toilet-facing surface.

4. The toilet flange of claim 3, wherein the dam feature includes a raised edge.

5. The toilet flange of claim 1, wherein the toilet-facing surface includes at least a portion slanted toward the drain opening.

6. The toilet flange of claim 5, wherein a highest point of the toilet-facing surface is substantially adjacent to a dam feature configured to prevent a fluid from escaping radially from a periphery of the toilet-facing surface.

7. The toilet flange of claim 1, further comprising a plurality of mounting apertures extending through the body and configured to receive a second fastener for attaching the body to a fixed surface.

8. The toilet flange of claim 7, further comprising a retaining wall substantially surrounding a respective mounting aperture in the plurality of mounting apertures.

9. The toilet flange of claim 1, further comprising a channel fluidly connecting a respective chamber in the at least two chambers to the drain opening, the channel extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body.

10. The toilet flange of claim 1, further comprising a conduit fluidly connecting a respective chamber in the at least two chambers to the drain opening.

11. The toilet flange of claim 1, further comprising a plurality of sealed mounting apertures extending through the body and configured to receive a fastener for attaching the body to a fixed surface, the sealing mounting apertures being sealed at the drain-facing surface via a polymer layer.

12. A toilet flange comprising: a body having a toilet-facing surface, a drain-facing surface, and a drain opening therethrough; and a dam feature configured to prevent a fluid from escaping radially from a periphery of the toilet-facing surface.

13. The toilet flange of claim 12, further comprising at least two chambers extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body, each chamber having a fastener passageway for receiving a portion of a fastener for coupling the body to the toilet base.

14. The toilet flange of claim 12, wherein the body has a poly-sided perimeter shape.

15. The toilet flange of claim 12, further comprising a plurality of mounting apertures extending through the body and configured to receive a fastener for attaching the body to a fixed surface.

16. The toilet flange of claim 15, further comprising a retaining wall substantially surrounding a respective mounting aperture in the plurality of mounting apertures.

17. The toilet flange of claim 12, wherein the toilet-facing surface includes at least a portion slanted toward the drain opening.

18. The toilet flange of claim 13, further comprising a channel fluidly connecting a respective chamber in the at least two chambers to the drain opening, the channel extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body.

19. The toilet flange of claim 13, further comprising a conduit fluidly connecting a respective chamber in the at least two chambers to the drain opening.

20. The toilet flange of claim 12, further comprising a plurality of sealed mounting apertures extending through the body and configured to receive a fastener for attaching the body to a fixed surface, the sealing mounting apertures being sealed at the drain-facing surface via a polymer layer.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

This disclosure relates generally to toilet installation hardware and more specifically to toilet flanges configured to prevent water damage to the sub-floor.

BACKGROUND

The installation of a toilet requires the use of a toilet flange to connect the base of the toilet to a drain and the sub-floor. The toilet flange is generally installed by attaching the flange to the sub-floor. If a leak developed, any fluid would escape from the surface of the flange and come into contact with the sub-floor causing damage.

Traditionally, an installer would grind or cut the tiles such that the tiles would be adjacent to the flange. The installer would then proceed to use adhesives to affix the tile to the sub-floor and use grout to seal the gaps between the tiles. The installer would then be forced to rely solely on the combination of adhesives and grout to prevent water damage to the sub-floor should a leak occur.

SUMMARY

A first embodiment of the invention provides a toilet flange that includes a body having a toilet-facing surface, a drain-facing surface, and a drain opening therethrough and at least two chambers extending from the toilet-facing surface only partially into the body, each chamber having a fastener passageway for receiving a portion of a first fastener for coupling the body to a toilet base.

A second embodiment of the invention provides a toilet flange that includes a body having a toilet-facing surface, a drain-facing surface, and a drain opening therethrough and a dam feature configured to prevent a fluid from escaping radially from a periphery of the toilet-facing surface.

A third embodiment of the invention provides a toilet flange that includes a body having a toilet-facing surface and a drain-facing surface and a drain opening extending through the body, wherein at least a portion of the toilet-facing surface is slanted toward the drain opening.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other features of this invention will be more readily understood from the following detailed description of the various aspects of the invention taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings that depict various embodiments, in which:

FIG. 1 shows a plan view of an embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 2 shows a plan view of an alternative embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 3 shows a plan view of an alternative embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 4 shows a side view of an embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 5 shows a side view of an alternative embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 6 shows a plan view of another embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 7 shows a three-dimensional cross-sectional view of a portion of the embodiment shown in FIG. 6 taken along line A-A according to an embodiment of the toilet flange.

FIG. 8. shows a three-dimensional cross-sectional view of an alternative embodiment to that which is shown in FIG. 7.

It is noted that the drawings of the invention are not to scale. The drawings are intended to depict only typical aspects of the invention, and therefore should not be considered as limiting the scope of the invention. In the drawings, like numbering represents like elements between the drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

In the following description, reference is made to the accompanying drawings that form a part thereof, and in which is shown by way of illustration specific exemplary embodiments in which the present teachings may be practiced. These embodiments are described in sufficient detail to enable those skilled in the art to practice the present teachings, and it is to be understood that other embodiments may be used and that changes may be made without departing from the scope of the present teachings. The following description is, therefore, merely illustrative.

Disclosed herein are various embodiments for a toilet flange. The current disclosure is directed to the mounting surface of a toilet flange and improvements thereof. As one of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate, any standard drain connection design is easily adapted to the toilet flange disclosed herein. Therefore, the specifics of the drain connection are omitted herein for brevity.

Referring to FIG. 1, a toilet flange 100 includes a body 102 having a toilet-facing surface 104, a drain-facing surface (not shown), a drain opening 106 therethrough, and a chamber 108 extending from toilet-facing surface 104 only partially into body 102, chamber 108 having a fastener passageway 110 for receiving a portion of a fastener (not shown) for coupling body 102 to a toilet base (not shown). In one embodiment, body 102 may have at least two chambers. However, it is to be understood that toilet flange 100 may have any number of chambers without departing from embodiments of the invention. Body 102 may be manufactured from a thermoplastic including, but not limited to, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Alternatively, body 102 may be manufactured from a metal.

Still referring to FIG. 1, fastener passageway 110 may include a receiving end 112 that is wider than the fastener and a retaining end 114 that is narrower than the portion of the fastener located within chamber 108. Upon inserting the fastener into receiving end 112, the toilet base may be moved such that the fastener is moved from receiving end 112 to retaining end 114. Once the fastener is positioned at retaining end 114, movement of the fastener out of fastener passageway 110 may be restrained. That is, the fastener is restrained by virtue of retaining end 114 being narrower than the portion of fastener located within chamber 108. The fastener may include a bolt wherein the head of the bolt is located within chamber 108, a bolt having a nut positioned on the portion of the fastener located within chamber 108, or any similar fastening device where the portion within chamber 108 is wider than retaining end 114.

Still referring to FIG. 1, body 102 may include a dam feature 116 configured to prevent a fluid (not shown) from escaping radially from the periphery of toilet-facing surface 104. Dam feature 116 may include a raised edge formed on toilet-facing surface 104. Alternatively, dam feature 116 may include a gasket or other object placed or affixed to toilet-facing surface 104 in a manner that prevents the fluid from escaping radially from the periphery of toilet facing surface 104. Dam feature 116 may be positioned on a perimeter of body 102. The perimeter of body 102 may comprise any shape including a poly-sided shape.

Still referring to FIG. 1, body 102 may include a plurality of mounting apertures 118 extending through body 102 and configured to receive a fastener (not shown) for attaching body 102 to a fixed surface (not shown). Mounting apertures 118 may be countersunk 120. In an alternative embodiment, mounting apertures 118 are replaced with sealed mounting apertures 218 as shown in FIG. 2. Sealed mounting apertures 218 may be closed or sealed at the drain-facing surface of body 102 (or a surface opposite of toilet-facing surface 104), e.g., with a thin layer of plastic that is integral with the rest of body 102. The layer may be configured to break via insertion of the fastener (not shown) to provide a seal around the fastener. The layer may include, for example, a polymer such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyolefin, polyurethane, ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), polyethylene vinyl acetate (PEVA), polyvinyl acetate (PVA), and polyvinyl butyral (PVB). Mounting apertures 118, 218 may be located at the perimeter of body 102. Mounting apertures 118, 218 may be surrounded by retaining walls 122 which may be connected to dam feature 116 on opposite sides of mounting apertures 118. Retaining walls 122 may include a raised edge formed on toilet-facing surface 104. Retaining walls 122 may be configured to prevent the fluid from entering a respective mounting aperture 118, 218. Retaining walls 122 may be raised from toilet-facing surface 104 at least 75% as high as dam feature 116. In some embodiments, retaining walls 122 may be raised from toilet-facing surface 104 just as high as dam features 116 such that retaining walls 122 are substantially flush with dam feature 116. More particularly, in one embodiment, retaining walls 122 may fully or partially enclose mounting aperture 118. Dam feature 116 and retaining walls 122 may be configured to prevent the fluid from radially escaping the periphery of toilet-facing surface 104 and from entering mounting aperture 118.

Referring also to FIG. 3, body 102 may include removable area 300. For example, removable area 300 may include a groove 302 extending from a first point 304 to a second point 306. Groove 302 being a location of stress concentration in body 102 such that when a predetermined force is applied, removable area 300 is removed from body 102. As would be appreciated by one having ordinary skill in the art, removable area 300 may be configured to be removed using alternative means, including, not limited to, snap fits or interference fits. In any case, dam feature 116 may extend from first point 304 to second point 306, but may not be located on removable area 300.

Referring also to FIG. 4, body 102 may include a slanted toilet-facing surface 400. Slanted toilet-facing surface 400 may have an angle 402 greater than 0 degrees and less than approximately 2 degrees. Alternatively, angle 402 may be approximately 2 degrees. A portion of the slanted toilet-facing surface 400 may be slanted toward drain opening 106. A highest portion 304 of slanted toilet-facing surface 400 may be substantially adjacent to dam feature 116. As such herein, “substantially” refers to largely, for the most part, entirely specified or any slight deviation which provides the same technical benefits of the invention.

Referring also to FIG. 5, chamber 108 may extend only partially through body 102. Fastener passageway 110 may be positioned above a bottom 500 of chamber 108. An embodiment of fastener passageway 110 may have a passageway width 502 that is narrower than chamber width 504. The difference in width facilitates the retaining of the fastener within fastener passageway 110. By way of non-limiting example, the fastener may include a bolt 406 having bolt head 508 positioned within chamber 108, bolt head 508 being wider than passageway width 502. In another embodiment, bottom 500 may be configured to retain the liquid within chamber 108.

Referring also to FIGS. 6-7, toilet flange 100 may also include channels 630 fluidly connecting chamber 108 to drain opening 106. More particularly, channels 630 may connect receiving end 112 of fastener passageway 110 with drain opening 106. That is, channels 530 provide a fluid path from receiving end 112 to drain opening 106. Body 102 may deteriorate over time, and it may become difficult to control the flow of fluid as the fluid floods body 102. As such, channels 630 provide a fluid path such that the fluid that may flood body 102 and fastener passageway 110 can escape and exit through drain via drain opening 106. Channels 630 may extend from toilet-facing surface 104 only partially within body 102. For example, channels 630 may extend from toilet facing surface 104 within body 102 up to 50% of the depth of fastener passageway 110.

FIG. 8 shows an embodiment of toilet flange 100 alternative to that which is shown in FIG. 7. In this embodiment, a conduit 730 is provided for fluidly connecting chamber 108 (FIG. 5) and drain opening 106. As illustrated, conduit 730 couples receiving end 112 and drain opening 106. However, in other embodiments, conduit 730 may extend from anywhere within chamber 108 (FIG. 5), e.g., at receiving end 112, at retaining end 114 (FIG. 5), or along fastener passageway 110. Instead of partially extending from toilet facing surface 104 within body 102 as channel 630 (FIGS. 5-6), conduit 730 is covered or enclosed by toilet-facing surface 104. That is, conduit 730 extends from chamber 108 to drain opening 106 beneath toilet-facing surface 104. Accordingly, conduit 730 is less likely to be clogged by debris, as may occur with channel 630 (FIGS. 5-6), thereby ensuring that fluid drains from chamber 108.

The terminology used herein is for the purpose of describing particular embodiments only and is not intended to be limiting of the disclosure. As used herein, the singular forms “a,” “an” and “the” are intended to include the plural forms as well, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. It will be further understood that the terms “comprises” and/or “comprising,” when used in this specification, specify the presence of stated features, integers, steps, operations, elements, and/or components, but do not preclude the presence or addition of one or more other features, integers, steps, operations, elements, components, and/or groups thereof. Furthermore, illustrations with respect to one or more implementations, alterations and/or modifications can be made to the illustrated examples without departing from the spirit and scope of the appended claims. In addition, while a particular feature may have been disclosed with respect to only one of several implementations, such feature may be combined with one or more other features of the other implementations as may be desired and advantageous for any given or particular function.

This written description uses examples to disclose the invention, including the best mode, and to enable any person skilled in the art to practice the invention, including making and using any devices or systems and performing any incorporated methods. The patentable scope of the invention is defined by the claims, and may include other examples that occur to those skilled in the art. Such other examples are intended to be within the scope of the claims if they have structural elements that do not differ from the literal language of the claims, or if they include equivalent structural elements with insubstantial differences from the literal language of the claims.





 
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