US Patent no. 6,748,966 B1

Air Gap Soap Dispenser
Patent Line Drawings


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Air Gap Soap Dispenser

ABSTRACT

A structure is mounted on a sink top or counter top between a dishwasher discharge line and a vented plumbing line to provide an anti-siphon feature for a household dishwashing machine. The structure also includes in combination a pump-type soap dispenser. The pump-type soap dispenser includes a push-actuated pump to pump liquid soap from a reservoir bottle, and the pump slides into and out of a mounting collar for ease of removal to facilitate refilling the reservoir bottle.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to the field of household dishwashers and, more particularly, to an air gap structure for such a dishwasher in combination with a liquid soap dispenser.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Modem plumbing codes typically specify that an anti-siphon or air gap must be located between a household dishwasher outlet hose and the sewage drain line. If a garbage disposer exists, the air gap must be located between the dishwasher outlet hose and the garbage disposer. This prevents development of a vacuum in the lines which could cause drain or waste water to be siphoned back into the dishwasher and into the water supply upstream of the dishwasher. The structure and explanation of such a system is shown and described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,713,385, incorporated herein by reference.

The body of the typical dishwasher air gap extends above the top of the sink or the kitchen counter next to the sink. It includes one or more air gap openings providing communication between the environment and a chamber within the air gap body through which the dishwasher water flows. The dishwasher outlet hose is connected to an air gap inlet conduit of the air gap body. This inlet conduit terminates adjacent the vent chamber of the air gap body so that the stream of dishwasher waste water passing through the chamber is vented to atmosphere.

A typical dishwasher air gap retrofit apparatus is sold by LDR Industries, Inc. Unfortunately, the air gap apparatus extends above the sink or counter top and often has no other useful apparent function. The same company, LDR Industries, Inc., also sells a soap dispenser which is adapted to me mounted in an opening at a sink top or counter top, but is not adapted to be fit together with the air gap apparatus. Thus, there remains a need for a liquid soap dispenser that is adapted to be mounted in combination with an air gap apparatus in order to eliminate the unsightly air gap extension above the counter top or sink top. The present invention solves that need in the art.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention comprises a structure mounted on a sink top or counter top between a dishwasher discharge line and a vented plumbing line to provide the anti-siphon feature previously described, in combination with a pump-type soap dispenser. The pump-type soap dispenser includes a push-actuated pump to pump liquid soap from a reservoir bottle, and the pump slides into and out of a mounting collar for ease of removal to facilitate refilling the reservoir bottle.

The liquid soap may comprise hand-washing soap, dishwashing soap, or any other appropriate liquid soap or lotion useful at a sink.

These and other features and advantages of the invention will be apparent to those of skill in the art from a review of 60 the following detailed description along with the accompanying drawings.