Sanitizing door handle fluid container assembly

Information

  • Patent Grant
  • 11331400
  • Patent Number
    11,331,400
  • Date Filed
    Monday, October 12, 2020
    a year ago
  • Date Issued
    Tuesday, May 17, 2022
    a month ago
Abstract
Various implementations of the invention are directed toward a sanitizing door handle and/or components of such sanitizing door handle. Some implementations of the invention are directed toward a manual sanitizing door handle while some implementations of the invention are directed toward an auto-sanitizing door handle. According to some implementations of the invention, a sanitizing fluid is dispensed directly onto an exterior surface of the sanitizing door handle in connection with an operation of the door handle to sanitize the door handle. According to some implementations of the invention, a sanitizing fluid is dispensed directly onto a user's hand(s) in connection with an operation of the door handle to sanitize the user's hand(s).
Description
FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention is generally related to door handles, and more specifically to sanitizing door handles.


BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Conventional door handles suffer from actual or perceived cleanliness or sanitation issues. Such door handles may include, but are not limited to, restroom door handles, medical/hospital door handles, refrigerator or other food storage door handles, hotel/motel door handles, airplane bathroom handles, school door handles, clean room door handles, and other door handles.


In some instances, door handles with improved cleanliness and/or sanitation are needed. In some instances, door handles with fluid dispensers, such as, but not limited to sanitizing fluid dispensers, are needed.


SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Various implementations of the invention are directed toward a sanitizing door handle and/or components of such sanitizing door handle such that the sanitizing door handle is sanitized or cleaned in some fashion. Various implementations of the invention are directed toward a manual sanitizing door handle and/or components of such sanitizing door handle. In such implementations, a user manually operates a pump that dispenses a fluid, such as, but not limited to, a sanitizing fluid, onto a grip of the sanitizing door handle. Various implementations of the invention are directed toward an auto-sanitizing door handle. In such implementations of the invention, the user operates the sanitizing door handle, and such operation automatically actuates the pump to dispense the fluid onto the the grip of the sanitizing door handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed directly onto an exterior of the sanitizing handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed into an interior of the sanitizing handle and flows through to the exterior of the sanitizing handle. In various implementations of the invention, the fluid selected for use with various implementations of the invention controls, in part, the level of “cleaning” or “sanitizing” of the door handle from sterilized to disinfected to cleaned or to some other level of cleanliness.


Various implementations of the invention are directed to a hand sanitizing dispenser that dispenses a fluid, such as a sanitizing fluid, onto hand(s) of a user when the user operates or otherwise engages a door handle, such as, but not limited to, the sanitizing door handles discussed above. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed directly onto the hands of the user. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed onto the exterior of the sanitizing handle and is subsequently passed onto the hands of the user through contact with the sanitizing door handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed into an interior of the sanitizing handle, flows through to the exterior of the sanitizing handle, and subsequently is passed onto the hands of the user through contact with the sanitizing door handle. In various implementations of the invention, the fluid selected for use with various implementations of the invention controls, in part, the level of “cleaning” or “sanitizing” of the hands of the user from sterilized to disinfected to cleaned or to some other level of cleanliness.





BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS


FIG. 1 illustrates a sanitizing door handle from a first perspective in accordance with various implementations of the invention.



FIG. 2 illustrates a sanitizing door handle from a second perspective in accordance with various implementations of the invention.



FIG. 3 illustrates a sanitizing fluid assembly in accordance with various implementations of the invention.



FIG. 4 illustrates a door handle grip in accordance with various implementations of invention.



FIG. 5 illustrates a distribution manifold in accordance with various implementations of invention.



FIG. 6 illustrates a fluid pump and a keyed check valve in accordance with various implementations of the invention.



FIG. 7 illustrates a keyed check valve receiver in accordance with various implementations of the invention.



FIG. 8 illustrates a fluid container housing separate from a door handle in accordance with various implementations of the invention.





DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Various implementations of the invention are directed toward a sanitizing door handle and/or components of such sanitizing door handle such that the sanitizing door handle is sanitized or cleaned in some fashion. Various implementations of the invention are directed toward a manual sanitizing door handle and/or components of such sanitizing door handle. In such implementations, a user manually operates a pump that dispenses a fluid, such as, but not limited to, a sanitizing fluid, onto a grip of the sanitizing door handle. Various implementations of the invention are directed toward an auto-sanitizing door handle. In such implementations of the invention, the user operates the sanitizing door handle, and such operation automatically actuates the pump to dispense the fluid onto the the grip of the sanitizing door handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed directly onto an exterior of the sanitizing handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed into an interior of the sanitizing handle and flows through to the exterior of the sanitizing handle. In various implementations of the invention, the fluid selected for use with various implementations of the invention controls, in part, the level of “cleaning” or “sanitizing” of the door handle from sterilized to disinfected to cleaned or to some other level of cleanliness.


Various implementations of the invention are directed to a hand sanitizing dispenser that dispenses a fluid, such as a sanitizing fluid, onto hand(s) of a user when the user operates or otherwise engages a door handle, such as, but not limited to, the sanitizing door handles discussed above. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed directly onto the hands of the user. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed onto the exterior of the sanitizing handle and is subsequently passed onto the hands of the user through contact with the sanitizing door handle. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is dispensed into an interior of the sanitizing handle, flows through to the exterior of the sanitizing handle, and subsequently is passed onto the hands of the user through contact with the sanitizing door handle. In various implementations of the invention, the fluid selected for use with various implementations of the invention controls, in part, the level of “cleaning” or “sanitizing” of the hands of the user from sterilized to disinfected to cleaned or to some other level of cleanliness.


These, and other implementations and/or inventions and/or components thereof are now described.


Sanitizing Door Handle


FIG. 1 illustrates a sanitizing door handle 100 from a first perspective according to various implementations of the invention. FIG. 2 illustrates sanitizing door handle 100 from a second perspective according to various implementations of the invention. Door handle 100 includes a door handle housing 110 having a housing wall 115. Housing wall 115 may be fabricated from a variety of materials, including, but not limited to: metal, plastic, ceramic, fiberglass, wood, polymer, rubber, or other materials that may be used to fabricate housing wall 115, and/or combinations thereof, as would be appreciated. Housing wall 115 forms a hollow interior housing chamber 112 of door handle housing 110. Housing wall 115 may be formed from one or more housing wall components. In some implementations of the invention, at least one housing wall component is detachable from housing wall 115 in order to provide access to interior housing chamber 112. In some implementations of the invention, housing wall 115 is detachable from a door in order to provide access to interior housing chamber 112. Interior housing chamber 112 and its purpose is described in further detail below.


Door handle 100 may be configured as a grip, a knob, a lever, a button, a pushbar, a pullbar, a latch, or other suitable handle by which a user opens, closes, latches, unlatches, locks, unlocks, or otherwise operates door handle 100 to open or close a door to which door handle 100 is operatively attached. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to push open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to pull open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to push to actuate a latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to pull to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to rotate up to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to rotate down to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to rotate up to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to rotate down to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to slide left to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to slide right to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to slide left to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to slide right to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to be depressed to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to be depressed to actuate the latch to open the door. In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 may be configured to open the door or actuate the latch in other manners as would be appreciated.


According to various implementations of the invention, door handle 100 includes a door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, door handle grip 120 may be fabricated from a variety of materials, including, but not limited to: metal (e.g., aluminum, titanium, stainless steel, etc.), plastic, polymer, ceramic, fiberglass, wood, rubber, other materials that may be used to fabricate door handle grip 120, and/or combinations thereof (e.g., polymer coated metal, etc.), as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention, door handle grip 120 is operatively coupled to, for example, a door latch linkage 160 and/or a door latch actuator 170 as illustrated in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2. As would be appreciated, door latch actuator 170 operatively engages a door latch which in turn allows a door to open and/or close as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, door latch linkage 160 may also be operatively coupled to a pump actuator (not otherwise illustrated) configured to, mechanically or electronically, actuate fluid pump 140 when the user operates door handle 100 via door handle grip 120 as would be appreciated.


According to various implementations of the invention, when the user operates door handle 100 via door handle grip 120, a fluid is dispensed onto door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is a sanitizing fluid that is dispensed onto door handle grip 120 to sanitize door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid is dispensed directly onto door handle grip 120 to sanitize door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid is dispensed into an interior of door handle grip 120 and flows through door handle grip 120 to sanitize door handle grip 120. In various implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid may be dispensed onto door handle grip 120, before, during, and/or after the operation of door handle 100 by the user.


According to various implementations of the invention, when the user operates door handle 100 via door handle grip 120, a fluid is dispensed onto the hand(s) of the user. In some implementations of the invention, the fluid is a sanitizing fluid that is dispensed onto the hand(s) of the user to sanitize the hand(s). In some implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid is dispensed directly onto the hand(s) of the user to sanitize the hand(s). In some implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid is dispensed directly onto door handle grip 120 to sanitize the hand(s) of the user when the hand(s) come into contact with handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid is dispensed into an interior of door handle grip 120 and flows through door handle grip 120 to sanitize the hand(s) of the user when the hand(s) come into contact with handle grip 120. In various implementations of the invention, the sanitizing fluid may come into contact with the hand(s) before, during, and/or after the operation of door handle 100 by the user.


Fluid Container Assembly

In some implementations of the invention, door handle 100 includes a fluid container assembly disposed in interior housing chamber 112. FIG. 3 illustrates a fluid container assembly 300 according to various implementations of the invention. (Various components of fluid container assembly 300, such as fluid container 130 and a fluid pump 140, are also illustrated in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 in an exemplary configuration.) In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may include fluid container 130, fluid pump 140, one or more sections of tubing 310 (illustrated in FIG. 3, for example, as tubing 310A and tubing 310B). In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may also include a distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may also include a tubing cap 320 or other termination. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may also include a check valve 350.


According to various implementations of the invention, fluid pump 140 is coupled to fluid container 130 and configured to pump a fluid (not otherwise illustrated) from inside of fluid container 130 into tubing 310. In some implementations of the invention, tubing 310 is operatively coupled to fluid pump 140; however, in other implementations of the invention, tubing 310 may be operatively coupled directly to fluid container 130 as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention such as that illustrated in the drawings, fluid pump 140 is a diaphragm pump which operates by mechanically depressing the diaphragm of fluid pump 140 to force some amount of the fluid out of fluid container 130, through fluid pump 140, and into tubing 310. In some implementations of the invention, other types of pumps may be used, including various other mechanical type or electrical type pumps. In some implementations of the invention, fluid pump 140 may be manually actuated by the user; for example, the user may depress the diaphragm of fluid pump 140 to fluid actuate pump 140. In some implementations of the invention, fluid pump 140 may be indirectly actuated by the user; for example, fluid pump 140 may be indirectly and automatically actuated when the user operates door handle 100, either via cams, levers, linkages, etc., to mechanically actuate fluid pump 140, or via a switch to electrically actuate fluid pump 140, as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention, the fluid may be a sanitizing fluid, which may include any fluid having sterilizing, disinfecting, antiseptic, antimicrobial, and/or other sanitizing or cleaning properties. Active ingredients in the sanitizing fluid may include alcohol-based sanitizing fluids such as, but not limited to, isopropyl alcohol, ethyl alcohol, n-proponal, and other alcohol-based fluids; or non-alcohol-based sanitizing fluids such as, but not limited to, benzalkonium chloride (a chemical disinfectant), triclosan (an antiseptic), thymol (an organic antibacterial agent), and/or other non-alcohol-based sanitizing fluids. In some implementations of the invention, the active ingredients may be mixed with a carrier ingredient such as glycerol or other gel-like ingredient to achieve a certain amount of viscosity as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, the active ingredients may be aerosolized to be sprayed onto hand(s) or door handles as would be appreciated. Sanitizing fluids are available from various manufacturers and sold under names, including, but not limited to: Purell®, Germ-X®, CleanWell™, Babyganics®, CVS®, BlumNaturals®, and other manufacturers and/or names.


In some implementations of the invention, tubing 310 facilitates transport of sanitizing fluid from fluid container 130 through distribution manifold 330 to door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, tubing 310 facilitates transport of sanitizing fluid from fluid container 130 to door handle grip 120; in such implementations, door handle grip 120 incorporates distribution manifold 330 or door handle grip 120 functions on its own in a manner similar to distribution manifold 330. In various implementations, tubing 310 may include, but is not limited to: nylon tubing, vinyl tubing, pvc tubing, rubber tubing, Teflon tubing, Tyron tubing, hdpe tubing, PFA tubing, FEP tubing, MFA tubing, PTFE tubing and other types of tubing as would be appreciated.


Distribution Manifold


FIG. 5 illustrates distribution manifold 330 in further detail. In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is formed separate from and then coupled to tubing 310. In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is formed as part of tubing 310. According to various implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 dispenses fluid from an interior of distribution manifold 330 to an exterior of distribution manifold 330 via a plurality of distribution holes, such as distribution holes 510 in FIG. 5. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are formed around a circumference of distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are formed along a length of distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are formed along the circumference and the length of distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are formed only along a portion of the circumference and/or a portion of the length of distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, a single distribution hole 510 may be used. In some implementations of the invention, a plurality of distribution holes 510 may be used. Various numbers of distribution holes 510 may be used and configured in various patterns as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 may be terminated (i.e., closed such that no fluid may exit its end). In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 may be terminated by a tubing cap 520.


In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are sized based on various fluid parameters of the sanitizing fluid, for example, viscosity, evaporation rate, density, and/or other various fluid parameters. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 may be “self-healing” in the sense that when the sanitizing fluid in distribution manifold 330 is under pressure (e.g., pressure created by fluid pump 140), distribution holes 510 open, allowing sanitizing fluid to be dispensed; and when the sanitizing fluid in distribution manifold 330 is not under pressure, distribution holes 510 close, allowing little, if any, sanitizing fluid to be dispensed. Such self-healing implementations may be configured using, for example, nylon tubing, or the like, as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is coupled to and/or disposed within door handle grip 120.


In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 is a replacement fluid container assembly 300 such that once the fluid is emptied from fluid container assembly 300, such an “empty” fluid container assembly 300 may be removed from door handle 100, and a new fluid container assembly 300 may be installed in door handle 100. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may be sold together with door handle 100; while in some implementations of the invention, fluid container assembly 300 may be sold separately from door handle 100 as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container 130 may be refillable without replacing fluid container assembly 300.


Door Handle Grip


FIG. 4 illustrates door handle grip 120 in further detail. Door handle grip includes a distal grip end 410 and a proximal grip end 420. In some implementations of the invention, grip wall 125 forms a hollow interior grip chamber 440 extending from proximal grip end 420 to distal grip end 410. In some implementations of the invention, distal grip end 410 is closed and proximal grip end 420 is open. In some implementations of the invention, both ends 410, 420 are open. While door handle grip 120 is illustrated as generally cylindrical in FIG. 4, other shapes and configurations may be used. For example, door handle grip 120 may be configured to conform with any shape of a door interface with which the user comes into contact to operate door handle 100, including configured to conform entirely around such door interface, partially around such door interface, or simply on one or more surfaces of such door interface, as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention, a plurality of grip holes (illustrated, for example, as a plurality of grip holes 430 in FIG. 4) are formed into grip wall 125. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 serve to transfer the fluid from interior grip chamber 440 to an exterior grip surface 450 of door handle grip 120. In this way, the fluid entering interior grip chamber 440 from proximal grip end 440 is dispensed through interior grip chamber 440, through grip holes 430 and onto exterior grip surface 450. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are located on door handle grip 120 in regions where the user is likely to engage door handle 100 in order to operate door handle 100. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed around a circumference of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed along a length of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed along the circumference and the length of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed only along a portion of the circumference and/or a portion of the length of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, a single grip hole 430 may be used. In some implementations of the invention, a plurality of grip holes 430 may be used. In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed in a length of about a hand's width (e.g., 3-6 inches). In some implementations of the invention, grip holes 430 are formed in a length of about two hand's width (e.g., 6-12 inches). Other lengths of grip holes 430 along door handle grip 120 may be used as would be appreciated. Various numbers of grip holes 430 may be used and configured in various patterns as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is operatively coupled to door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is disposed in interior grip chamber 440 of door handle grip 120. In such implementations, when the fluid is dispensed through distribution manifold 330, the fluid enters interior grip chamber 440 of door handle grip 120 and is subsequently dispensed through grip holes 430 to exterior grip surface 450 of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, distribution holes 510 are aligned with grip holes 430 to facilitate flow of the fluid through distribution manifold 330 to exterior grip surface 450 of door handle grip 120 as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention, distribution manifold 330 is integrated directly into door handle grip 120. In such implementations, tubing 310 is operatively coupled to door handle grip 120 which in turn functions as both grip and distribution manifold as discussed above.


Check Valve

In some implementations of the invention, check valve 340 is coupled between fluid pump 140 and distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, check valve 340 is coupled directly to fluid pump 140. In some implementations of the invention, check valve 340 is coupled directly to distribution manifold 330. In some implementations of the invention, check valve 340 is coupled to tubing 310 in between pump 140 and distribution manifold 330 (i.e., check valve 340 coupled between tubing 310A and 310B as illustrated in FIG. 3).


According to various implementations of the invention, check valve 340 is configured to allow the fluid from fluid container 130 to flow in only one direction, namely from fluid container 130 to distribution manifold 330. When actuated, fluid pump 140 pumps (i.e., forces) the fluid from fluid container 130 into tubing 310, through check valve 340 and on toward distribution manifold 330. Once pressure from fluid pump 140 subsides, check valve 340 closes to prevent the fluid from flowing back to fluid container 130 and also to maintain pressure in tubing 310 between check valve 340 and distribution manifold 330 until the fluid is dispensed.


In some implementations of the invention, check valve 340 may be shaped or “keyed” to aid in aligning or positioning various components of fluid container assembly 300 in door handle 100. For example, FIG. 6 illustrates fluid pump 140 coupled to a keyed check valve 630 in accordance with various implementations of the invention. In some implementations of the invention, a pump seat 610 may be integrated into interior housing chamber 112 to align, orient and/or position fluid pump 140 in interior housing chamber 112. As illustrated, pump seat 610 may include a keyed check valve receiver 620. In some implementations of the invention, only keyed check valve 630 may fit into keyed check valve receiver 620. FIG. 7 illustrates an example of a keyed hole 710 formed in keyed check valve receiver 620 configured to receive keyed check valve 630. As would be appreciated, keyed hole 710 and keyed check valve 630 may have corresponding shapes different from that illustrated in FIG. 7. For example, while keyed hole 710 (and corresponding keyed check valve 630) is illustrated as generally hexagon and isometric in shape, keyed hole 710 may be other than generally hexagonal in shape or other than generally isometric in shape. Also for example, while keyed hole 710 is illustrated as having two semicircular protrusions, keyed hole 710 may have other numbers of protrusions or other indentations (e.g., semicircular indentations) as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, keyed check valve 630 may be friction fit into keyed hole 710 as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, keyed check valve 630 may be snap fit into keyed hole 710 as would be appreciated.


In some implementations of the invention (not otherwise illustrated), keyed check valve 630 may be directly coupled to distribution manifold 330. In such implementations, keyed check valve receiver 620 may be integrated into door handle grip 120 to align, orient, and/or position distribution manifold 330 in door handle grip. In some implementations of the invention (not otherwise illustrated), keyed check valve 630 and keyed check valve receiver 630 may be disposed at various locations in door handle 100 to maintain alignment, orientation, and/or position of various components of fluid container assembly 300 as would be appreciated.


While keyed check valve 630 is described herein as a single component, it may be separated into two separate components, namely a check valve and a key, as would be appreciated. While fluid pump 140 and keyed check valve 630 are illustrated in FIG. 6 as being directly coupled to one another, in other implementations, tubing 310 may be disposed between fluid pump 140 and keyed check valve 630 as would be appreciated.


Tubing Cap

In some implementations of the invention, tubing cap 320 is shaped or “keyed” to a corresponding key hole in distal end 410 of interior grip chamber 440 of door handle grip 120. In some implementations of the invention, tubing cap 320 is sized to friction fit or snap fit tubing cap 320 into the key hole of interior grip chamber 440 of door handle grip 120 to maintain alignment, orientation, and/or position of distribution manifold 330 within interior grip chamber 440 as would be appreciated.


Fluid Container Housing External to Door Handle

In various implementations of the invention, fluid container 130 (and associated components) are disposed externally to a door handle. FIG. 8 illustrates a fluid container housing 820, including fluid container 130, separate from and external to a door handle 830 in accordance with various implementations of the invention. Such implementations may be desirable in situations where space, access, clearance and/or configuration considerations do not permit installation of door handle 100. In these implementations of the invention, fluid container housing 820 houses fluid container 130 and other components of fluid container assembly 300 (not otherwise illustrated in FIG. 8) as would be appreciated. Fluid container 130 is operatively coupled to external tubing 840, which in some implementations of the invention, may be covered, for example, with braided reinforcement to protect external tubing 840 as would be appreciated. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container housing is mounted on the same side of a door 810 as door handle 830. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container housing is mounted on the opposite side of door 810 as door handle 830. In some implementations of the invention, fluid container housing is mounted on a wall (not otherwise illustrated in FIG. 8) near door 810 on either the same or opposite side of door 810 as door handle 830. Depending on which side of door 810 fluid container housing 820 is mounted in relation to door handle 830, external tubing 840 may be configured to pass through a hole 850 in door 810, such as is illustrated in FIG. 8. Then, in a manner similar to that described above, external tubing 840 is operatively coupled to door handle grip 120 surrounding door handle 830. These implementations of the invention may utilize a battery-operated electrical pump disposed in or proximate to fluid container housing 820 and a switch disposed in door handle 830 or in door handle grip 120 for purposes of dispending fluid from fluid container 130 to exterior grip surface 450 of door handle grip 120.


While various implementations of the invention have been described herein in reference to certain door handles illustrated in the drawings, for example, other door handles and configurations thereof may be used as would be appreciated.

Claims
  • 1. A fluid container assembly, comprising: a fluid container configured to be disposed adjacent a door handle;a fluid disposed in the fluid container, wherein the fluid container comprises a sterilizing, disinfecting, antiseptic, antimicrobial, sanitizing or cleaning fluid;a tubing having a first end and second end, wherein the first end of the tubing is configured to receive a fluid from the fluid container and to communicate the fluid to the second end of the tubing;a distribution manifold coupled to the second end of the tubing, wherein the distribution manifold communicates fluid from an interior of the distribution manifold to an exterior of the distribution manifold via a plurality of distribution holes; anda check valve disposed along the tubing between the fluid container and the distribution manifold, the check valve configured to permit flow of the fluid through the tubing from the fluid container to the distribution manifold and to inhibit flow of the fluid through the tubing back to the fluid container.
  • 2. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, further comprising a pump operatively configured to force the fluid out of the fluid container into the first end of the tubing, through the tubing to the second end of the tubing, and to the distribution manifold.
  • 3. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the fluid comprises an alcohol-based sanitizing fluid.
  • 4. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the fluid comprises a non-alcohol-based sanitizing fluid.
  • 5. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the fluid comprises a gel-like carrier ingredient.
  • 6. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the check valve is a keyed check valve configured to fit into a keyed check valve receiver of the door handle.
  • 7. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the plurality of distribution holes of the distribution manifold are formed into the second end of the tubing.
  • 8. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the plurality of distribution holes of the distribution manifold are self-healing.
  • 9. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the tubing comprises a flexible tubing.
  • 10. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the tubing comprises: a nylon tubing, a vinyl tubing, a pvc tubing, a rubber tubing, a Teflon tubing, a Tyron tubing, an hdpe tubing, a PFA tubing, a FEP tubing, a MFA tubing, or a PTFE tubing.
  • 11. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, wherein the tubing comprises a first tubing and a second tubing.
  • 12. The fluid container assembly of claim 1, further comprising a tubing cap configured to terminate the second end of the tubing.
  • 13. The fluid container assembly of claim 12, wherein the tubing cap is a keyed tubing cap configured to fit into a key hole of the door handle.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This Application is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,644, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle Fluid Container Assembly,” filed on Jun. 5, 2018, now U.S. Pat. No. 10,799,606; which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 17/062,599, entitled “Distribution Manifold with Integrated Check Valve,” and filed on Oct. 4, 2020; which is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,649, entitled “Distribution Manifold with Integrated Check Valve,” and filed on Jun. 5, 2018, now U.S. Pat. No. 10,792,382; which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/699,846, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” filed on Dec. 2, 2019; which is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,642, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” filed on Jun. 5, 2018, now granted as U.S. Pat. No. 10,494,166; which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,646, entitled “Method for Dispensing a Fluid During Door Operation,” and filed on Jun. 5, 2018, which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,647, entitled “Handle-Mounted Distribution Manifold,” and filed on Jun. 5, 2018, which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/845,980, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle with External Fluid Container,” and filed on Apr. 10, 2020; which is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,650, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle with External Fluid Container,” filed on Jun. 5, 2018, now granted as U.S. Pat. No. 10,617,777; which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” filed on Apr. 27, 2018; this Application is a divisional application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 16/000,652, entitled “Electronic Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Jun. 5, 2018, which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/663,506, entitled “Sanitizing Door Handle,” and filed on Apr. 27, 2018. Each of the foregoing patent applications is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.

US Referenced Citations (2)
Number Name Date Kind
8505782 Gardiner Aug 2013 B1
9255423 Oshmyansky Feb 2016 B2
Related Publications (1)
Number Date Country
20210252178 A1 Aug 2021 US
Provisional Applications (1)
Number Date Country
62663506 Apr 2018 US
Divisions (6)
Number Date Country
Parent 17062599 Oct 2020 US
Child 17068761 US
Parent 16845980 Apr 2020 US
Child 17062599 US
Parent 16699846 Dec 2019 US
Child 16845980 US
Parent 16000647 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000642 US
Parent 16000652 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000647 US
Parent 16000646 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000652 US
Continuations (4)
Number Date Country
Parent 16000649 Jun 2018 US
Child 16699846 US
Parent 16000644 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000649 US
Parent 16000650 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000644 US
Parent 16000642 Jun 2018 US
Child 16000650 US