Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberEP0106289 A2
Publication typeApplication
Application numberEP19830110046
Publication date25 Apr 1984
Filing date7 Oct 1983
Priority date8 Oct 1982
Also published asDE3376663D1, EP0106289A3, EP0106289B1
Publication number1983110046, 83110046, 83110046.6, EP 0106289 A2, EP 0106289A2, EP-A2-0106289, EP0106289 A2, EP0106289A2, EP19830110046, EP83110046
InventorsGiuseppe Frucco
ApplicantINDUSTRIE ZANUSSI S.p.A.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: Espacenet, EP Register
Laundry dryer with a lint filter monitoring device
EP 0106289 A2
Abstract
A laundry dryer having a perforated drying drum, an electric blower, at least one electric heater element, an arrangement of air ducts for circulating heated air through said drum for drying the laundry contained therein, and a lint retaining filter disposed in an air duct is provided with a monitoring device for detecting the operative condition, i.e. the state of clogging of said filter. The monitoring device includes at least two sensor electrodes disposed in spaced relationship on or adjacent said filter so as to be short-circuited by moist lint accumulating thereon. The Sensor electrodes are connected to signalling means and/or to an electric circuit controlling operation of the electrical components of the dryer, so as'to indicate clogging of the filter through said signalling means and/or to deenergize the electrical components in a clogged condition of the filter.
Images(3)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(3)
1. A laundry dryer comprising a blower,and at least one heater element for circulating heated air through the interior of a drum containing laundry to be dried by way of an air duct including a filter associated with a monitoring device connected to said heater element and to electric motors of said blower and said drum through an electric circuit adapted to be switched between to operative conditions, cha-racterized in that said monitoring device comprises at least two sensor electrodes (21, 22) disposed in spaced relationship and electrically insulated from one another adjacent said filter (17) so as to measure the electric conductivity of lint progressively accumulating on the active filter surface.
2. A laundry dryer according to claim 1, characterized in that each said sensor electrode is formed by a metallic filtering surface portion (21, 22) of said filter (17) enclosed in a frame (19, 20) of an insulating material, said frames (19, 20) being hingedly connected to one another a,ong adjacent edges and provided with mutually engageable means (25, 26) adjacent their free edges (27,28).
3. A laundry dryer according to claim 1, characterized in that said sensor electrodes are formed as metallic rods (31, 32) affixed in spaced relationship to only one filtering surface (30) of said filter with the possible interposition of respective insulating supports (33, 34).
Description
  • [0001]
    The present invention relates to a laundry dryer having a filter inserted in a duct for the circulation of heated drying air, and a monitoring device for detecting the operative condition of said filter.
  • [0002]
    Conventional laundry dryers comprise a blower and heater elements for circulating heated air through the interior of a drum containing the laundry to be dried by way of an air duct.
  • [0003]
    Inserted in said air duct is a filter adapted to retain lint and possibly present foreign bodies. Such filter is provided with monitoring means connected to the heater elements and to electric motors driving said blower and said drum by means of an electric circuit adapted to switch between two operative conditions. In the first such condition, with the filter functioning properly, this circuit supplies all the electric components of the machine in a regular manner. In the second such condition, with the filter clogged, the speed of the circulating heated air is reduced, and the temperature interiorly of the drum is increased, with the risk of the laundry being singed or burnt.
  • [0004]
    There have already been proposed various types of filter monitoring devices for detecting the latter operative condition and for interrupting the current supply to the electric components of the machine. A first type of such monitoring device is formed by a temperature sensor adapted to detect an excessive rise of the air temperature within the machine or an overheating condition of the heater elements.
  • [0005]
    A monitoring device of a second type comprises a pneumatic sensor adapted to detect the pressure difference of the heated air between the upstream and the downstream side of the filter.
  • [0006]
    A further monitoring device comprises a mechanical sensor responsive to variations of the air flow rate downstream of the filter.
  • [0007]
    The described monitoring devices thus carry out indirect measurements of the operative condition of the filter in a laundry dryer, so that, in case of failure of other functional components of the dryer, they are apt to erroneously indicate malfunction of the filter, and are thus not fully reliable for the stated purpose-.
  • [0008]
    Also known are monitoring devices directly cooperating with the filter, such devices comprising for instance an optical sensor for detecting the translucency, and thus the degree of clogging, of the filter. Also in this case, however, the obtained measurements of indicative of the operative condition of the filter may be erroneous due to the accumulation of dust on the optical sensor or to drifting of the sensor's adjustment, so that these devices are likewise unsuitable for obtaining satisfactory and reliable results.
  • [0009]
    It is finally to be noted that all of the described monitoring devices are of intricate construction and require periodic adjustment.
  • [0010]
    It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a filter monitoring device of simple construction, which is reliable in operation and avoids the necessity of periodic adjustment.
  • [0011]
    These and other objects are attained according to the invention in a laundry dryer comprising a blower and at least one heater element for circulating heated air through the interior of a drum containing the laundry to be dried by way of an air duct including a filter associated with a monitoring device connected to said heater element and to electric motors of said blower and said drum through an electric circuit adapted to-switch between two operative conditions.
  • [0012]
    In accordance with the invention, a laundry dryer of the type indicated above is characterized in that said monitoring device comprises at least two sensor electrodes disposed in spaced relationship and electrically insulated from one another adjacent said filter for measuring the electric conductivity of lint progressively accumulating on the active filter surface.
  • [0013]
    Further characteristics and advantages of the invention will become evident from the following description of exemplary embodiments thereof, with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein:
    • fig. 1 shows a diagrammatic cross-sectional view of a laundry dryer according to the invention,
    • fig. 2 shows a perspective view of a filter for mounting in the laundry dryer of fig. 1, in a first embodiment of the invention, and
    • fig. 3 shows a perspective view of a.filter constructed in accordance with a second embodiment of the invention.
  • [0014]
    With reference to fig. 1, a laundry dryer according to the invention comprises a housing 4 enclosing a perforated drum 5 for containing the laundry to be dried, mounted for rotation about its horizontal axis under the action of an electric motor (not shown). In particular, drum 5 is provided with a rear portion 6 formed with perforations 7. The dryer further comprises a front opening 8 closed by a door 9 giving access to drum 5 and being provided with a perforated interior wall 10. The rear side of the dryer is formed with openings 11 for the aspiration of air which is conveyed to the interior of drum 5 by way of an inlet duct 12 connected to rear portion 6 of drum 5 and enclosing at least one electric heater element 13. From drum 5 the heated air is exhausted through perforated wall 10 and conveyed to an outlet opening 14 by way of a further air duct 15 having a motor-driven blower installed therein.
  • [0015]
    In addition, duct 15 is provided with at least one filter 17 inserted thereinto through inlet opening 18 and serving to retain any lint set free by the laundry and any foreign matter possibly carriec along in the air stream, and with a device for monitoring the operative condition of filter 17.
  • [0016]
    As diagrammatically shown in fig. 2,-filter 17 in a first embodiment of the invention comprises two complementary frames 19 and 20 formed of a suitable insulating material and enclosing each a metallic filterinr surface 21, 22 of a fine mesh structure. Frames 19 and 20 are hingedly connected to one another along adjacent edges 23, 24, so that the filter can be opened in the manner of a book for cleaning and lint removal.
  • [0017]
    The opposite free edge portions 27, 28 of frames 19, 20 are formed with mutually engageable means 25, 26 for retaining the two frames in a partially closed position, in which they form an acute angle between themselves, so as to maintain a certain distance between filtering surfaces 21, 22. In this embodiment, the above named monitoring device is formed by the two filtering surfaces 21, 22 of the filter 17 itself, which to this effect additionally perform the function of sensor electrodes for detecting the degree of clogging of the filter in a manner to be described. The thus formed sensor electrodes are electrically insulated from one another by the respective frames 19, 20, and connected to the electric circuit of the dryer including heater element 13 and the electric motors driving drum 5 and blower 16.
  • [0018]
    The monitoring device of this embodiment basically functions through measurement of the varying electric conductivity of the lint accumulating between the filtering surfaces of the filter during the operation of the dryer, during which the filter is traversed by a stream of moist air.
  • [0019]
    As the accumulating lint is moist, its fibers act as electric conductors, permitting a weak current to flow across the sensor electrodes. This current may then be measured by means of a conventional electronic device connected to the sensor electrodes and to optical or acoustical signal means of any known type.
  • [0020]
    The described monitoring device is adjusted so as to remain inactive as 1-ong as the lint progressively accumulating on the filter allows a sufficient flow of heated air to pass therethrough for ensuring satisfactory drying of the laundry at temperatures lying between predetermined limits.
  • [0021]
    Under these conditions the signalling means is not activated, while electric heating element 13 and the above described motors continue to be supplied with current from the program unit of the machine (not shown).
  • [0022]
    Only when the filter becomes substantially clogged with lint, so that the speed of the air flow passing through the filter is decreased and the laundry within the drum is being dried at excessive temperatures with the danger of the laundry being damaged thereby, the monitoring device is activated in the described manner.
  • [0023]
    Under this condition the signal means is automatically activated to indicate to the user that the filter is completely clogged, while the heater element 13 and the motors are deenergized so as to interrupt the operating cycle of the dryer and to avoid any damage to the laundry.
  • [0024]
    Filter 17 may then be extracted from the dryer, thoroughly cleaned of the lint adhering thereto, and returned to its position for completing the interrupted drying cycle.
  • [0025]
    In the modified embodiment of the invention shown in fig. 3, the filter comprises a single frame 29 formed of a suitable insulating material and enclosing a fine-mesh filtering surface 30.
  • [0026]
    In this embodiment the sensor electrodes are formed as metallic rods 31, 32 transversely affixed to filtering surface 30 in spaced positions and, if the filter surface 30 is formed of metal or another electrically conductive material, with the interposition of insulating supports 33 and 34, respectively.
  • [0027]
    As in- the above described first'embodiment, the sensor- electrodes are connected to the electric circuit of the machine so as to indicate the operative condition of the filter in a similar manner. Within the scope of the invention it is of course possible to design the sensor electrodes in any other suitable manner as long as it is ensured that they can be effectively short-circuited by an accumulation of moist lint so as to be able to measure the electric conductivity thereof.
  • [0028]
    The described monitoring device is of simple construction, of convenient use and adapted to directly, accurately and reliably detect the operative condition of the filter without the necessity of periodic adjustment and of employing structurally complicated monitoring devices of the types described in the introduction.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
DE2135932A1 *15 Jul 197125 Jan 1973Siemens Elektrogeraete GmbhNach dem trommelprinzip mit luftumwaelzung arbeitender waeschetrockner
DE2747710A1 *25 Oct 197726 Apr 1979Licentia GmbhVapour extraction hood for kitchens - incorporates fan whose rotational speed is regulated by sensor with tandem potentiometer
US2722751 *18 Feb 19528 Nov 1955Maytag CoFluid conductor and lint collector for clothes drier
US3287818 *12 Mar 196429 Nov 1966Whirlpool CoElectronic dryer control pick-up device
US4400971 *29 May 198130 Aug 1983Electric Power Research Institute, Inc.Method and means for measuring particulate matter on a filter
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
EP2050862A1 *10 Sep 200822 Apr 2009BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbHFibre material filtering device and household device with such a fibre material filtering device
EP2230349A1 *20 Mar 200922 Sep 2010Electrolux Home Products Corporation N.V.Filtering cartridge for home laundry driers and home laundry drier provided with said filtering cartridge
EP2392724A3 *12 Sep 20112 May 2012V-Zug AGHousehold appliance, in particular laundry dryer, with a filtering device
EP2407588A116 Jul 201018 Jan 2012Electrolux Home Products Corporation N.V.Laundry dryer including a filtering cartridge and method for the production of such a cartridge
EP2562304A1 *24 Aug 201127 Feb 2013Electrolux Home Products Corporation N.V.Air stream filter for a laundry dryer
EP2570547A116 Sep 201120 Mar 2013Electrolux Home Products Corporation N.V.Fluff filter for a laundry drying machine
EP2584086A1 *21 Oct 201124 Apr 2013Electrolux Home Products Corporation N.V.Clothes drying machine with a moisture sensor
EP2848729A1 *25 Jul 201418 Mar 2015BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbHLaundry dryer
DE102014211304A1 *13 Jun 201417 Dec 2015BSH Hausgeräte GmbHFiltervorrichtung für eine Wäschebehandlungsmaschine und Wäschebehandlungsmaschine mit einer solchen
US764451525 May 200512 Jan 2010Lg Electronics Inc.Lint filter assembly of laundry dryer
US79262015 Sep 200719 Apr 2011Lg Electronics Inc.Dryer with clogging detecting function
US83872724 Sep 20075 Mar 2013Lg Electronics Inc.Clogging detecting system for dryer
US8997377 *12 Oct 20127 Apr 2015Lg Electronics Inc.Clothes treatment apparatus and method for controlling a clothes treatment apparatus
US925001611 Jan 20132 Feb 2016Lg Electronics Inc.Clothes treating apparatus with detecting device for insertion of filter
US975892028 Dec 201512 Sep 2017Lg Electronics Inc.Clothes treating apparatus with detecting device for insertion of filter
US20130091726 *12 Oct 201218 Apr 2013Youngsuk KimClothes treatment apparatus and method for controlling a clothes treatment apparatus
US20160053428 *31 Mar 201425 Feb 2016Electrolux Appliances AktiebolagTumble Dryer
WO2005121437A1 *25 May 200522 Dec 2005Lg Electronics, Inc.A lint filter assembly of laundry dryer
WO2015016795A1 *21 Jul 20145 Feb 2015Arcelik Anonim SirketiA laundry dryer comprising a lint filter
Classifications
International ClassificationD06F58/22
Cooperative ClassificationD06F58/22
European ClassificationD06F58/22
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
25 Apr 1984AKDesignated contracting states:
Designated state(s): AT BE CH DE FR GB IT LI LU NL SE
16 Apr 1986AKDesignated contracting states:
Kind code of ref document: A3
Designated state(s): AT BE CH DE FR GB IT LI LU NL SE
13 Aug 198617PRequest for examination filed
Effective date: 19860609
19 Nov 198717QFirst examination report
Effective date: 19871001
18 May 1988REFCorresponds to:
Ref document number: 34415
Country of ref document: AT
Date of ref document: 19880615
Kind code of ref document: T
Format of ref document f/p: P
18 May 1988AKDesignated contracting states:
Kind code of ref document: B1
Designated state(s): AT BE CH DE FR GB IT LI LU NL SE
18 May 1988PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: AT
Effective date: 19880518
Ref country code: CH
Effective date: 19880518
Ref country code: BE
Effective date: 19880518
Ref country code: LI
Effective date: 19880518
18 May 1988ITFIt: translation for a ep patent filed
Owner name: PROPRIA PROTEZIONE PROPR. IND.
31 May 1988PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: SE
Effective date: 19880531
17 Jun 1988ETFr: translation filed
23 Jun 1988REFCorresponds to:
Ref document number: 3376663
Country of ref document: DE
Date of ref document: 19880623
Format of ref document f/p: P
31 Aug 1988REGReference to a national code
Ref country code: CH
Ref legal event code: PL
31 Oct 1988PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: LU
Free format text: LAPSE BECAUSE OF NON-PAYMENT OF DUE FEES
Effective date: 19881031
10 May 198926NNo opposition filed
16 Jun 1989ITPRIt: changes in ownership of a european patent
Owner name: OFFERTA DI LICENZA AL PUBBLICO
31 Oct 1991ITTAIt: last paid annual fee
14 Sep 1999PGFPPostgrant: annual fees paid to national office
Ref country code: FR
Payment date: 19990914
Year of fee payment: 17
20 Sep 1999PGFPPostgrant: annual fees paid to national office
Ref country code: GB
Payment date: 19990920
Year of fee payment: 17
21 Sep 1999PGFPPostgrant: annual fees paid to national office
Ref country code: NL
Payment date: 19990921
Year of fee payment: 17
30 Sep 1999PGFPPostgrant: annual fees paid to national office
Ref country code: DE
Payment date: 19990930
Year of fee payment: 17
7 Oct 2000PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: GB
Free format text: LAPSE BECAUSE OF NON-PAYMENT OF DUE FEES
Effective date: 20001007
1 May 2001PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: NL
Free format text: LAPSE BECAUSE OF NON-PAYMENT OF DUE FEES
Effective date: 20010501
30 May 2001GBPCGb: european patent ceased through non-payment of renewal fee
Effective date: 20001007
29 Jun 2001PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: FR
Free format text: LAPSE BECAUSE OF NON-PAYMENT OF DUE FEES
Effective date: 20010629
2 Jul 2001NLV4Nl: lapsed or anulled due to non-payment of the annual fee
Effective date: 20010501
3 Jul 2001PG25Lapsed in a contracting state announced via postgrant inform. from nat. office to epo
Ref country code: DE
Free format text: LAPSE BECAUSE OF NON-PAYMENT OF DUE FEES
Effective date: 20010703
3 Aug 2001REGReference to a national code
Ref country code: FR
Ref legal event code: ST