Patent Issued for Modular Laundry System with Vertical Laundry ModuleWhirlpool CorporationNewsRx.com
By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Journal of Engineering -- A patent by the inventors Kendall, James W. (Mount Prospect, IL); Achterberg, Lorraine L. (St. Joseph, MI); Viswanathan, Ameresh Babu (St. Joseph, MI); Doyle, Colleen M. (Stevensville, MI); Sunshine, Richard A. (Granger, IN), filed on July 1, 2009, was cleared and issued on December 4, 2012, according to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews correspondents.
Patent number 8322169 is assigned to Whirlpool Corporation (Benton Harbor, MI).
The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates generally to a vertical laundry module for use with a laundry system.
"Laundry appliances, such as washing machines and clothes dryers, for cleaning fabric items are commonly housed in one area of a home, such as a dedicated laundry room. Basic laundry care and cleaning of fabric items requires washing and drying fabric items. Additional laundry care can require several steps, including hand-washing, flat-drying, ironing, and stain treatment. After fabric items have been cleaned, fabric items must be folded or hung.
"Each of these laundry care steps can require one or more laundry aids and equipment beyond a washing machine and clothes dryer. A laundry aid is a substance or agent used to clean or care for fabric items, such as, but not limited to, a laundry detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, bleach, spray-dewrinkler, or other substance used for cleaning fabric items. Additional equipment required for laundry care can include items such as an iron, ironing board, hangers and hanging rods for hanging fabric items, and mesh-screens for flat-drying.
"Many of the steps in the laundry process are spread throughout the home. To clean fabric items, dirty fabric items are typically brought to the laundry room from other rooms in the home. Sorting fabric items into separate loads is also often done in other rooms. The storing and sorting of fabric items outside the laundry room is necessary because many laundry rooms do not have the necessary space.
"Fabric items that must be hand-washed, are usually washed in a room other than the laundry room as some laundry rooms are not equipped with a sink. The hand washing in a room other than the laundry room scatters the laundry care throughout the home.
"After washing a load of fabric items, a user most often transfers the damp fabric items to the clothes dryer to dry the fabric items. After fabric items are removed from the clothes dryer, the user often goes to another room to fold and hang fabric items.
"Additional care of fabric items such as ironing, flat-drying and stain treatment is often done away from the laundry room. Again, many laundry rooms have space restrictions that prohibit the user from setting up an ironing board and ironing fabric items within the laundry room. Special fabric items, such as delicates and sweaters, are often flat-dried instead of being dried in the clothes dryer, thus also requiring extra space not found in many laundry rooms. Stain treatment often requires water and, as discussed above, many laundry rooms are not equipped with a sink. As with hand-washing, the user must treat the fabric item in another room of the home that is equipped with a sink.
"Laundry aids and equipment used during each of the above-mentioned steps are stored when not in use, and it is advantageous to the user to store these items near the location where they are used. Some users use separate storage means such as shelving systems, cabinets, or cupboards that are added to a laundry room to the often limited area not already utilized by the washing machine or clothes dryer. These separate storage means can lend a haphazard appearance the laundry room, especially when compared to a matched-set washing machine and clothes dryer.
"The decentralization of the laundry process throughout various rooms in the home increases the difficulty of the laundry process, along with increasing the inconvenience to the consumer."
In addition to the background information obtained for this patent, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "A modular laundry system comprising a first laundry appliance, a second laundry appliance, and a vertical laundry module having a stain treatment assembly. The vertical laundry module comprises a housing defining an interior and having an upper surface and a width less than the width of each of the first and second laundry appliances. The first laundry appliance, the second laundry appliance, and the vertical laundry module are stand-alone units arranged in a contiguous relationship to form a coherent modular system."
URL and more information on this patent, see: Kendall, James W.; Achterberg, Lorraine L.; Viswanathan, Ameresh Babu; Doyle, Colleen M.; Sunshine, Richard A.. Modular Laundry System with Vertical Laundry Module. U.S. Patent Number 8322169, filed July 1, 2009, and issued December 4, 2012. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&p=114&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-bool.html&r=5696&f=G&l=50&co1=AND&d=PTXT&s1=20121204.PD.&OS=ISD/20121204&RS=ISD/20121204
Keywords for this news article include: Whirlpool Corporation.
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