Patent application title: Curb-mounted screen for rooftop equipment
Richard Douglas Gephart (Overland Park, KS, US)
Allen S. Leet (Overland Park, KS, US)
Stephan L. Jensen (Chattanooga, TN, US)
Jonathon A. Steed (Chickamauga, GA, US)
IPC8 Class: AE04H1714FI
Class name: Static structures (e.g., buildings) rigid barrier cantilevered from vertical support
Publication date: 2009-01-22
Patent application number: 20090019789
Patent application title: Curb-mounted screen for rooftop equipment
Richard Douglas Gephart
Allen S. Leet
Stephan L. Jensen
Jonathon A. Steed
D.A.N Chase;Chase Law Firm, L.C.
Origin: KANSAS CITY, MO US
IPC8 Class: AE04H1714FI
A curb-mounted screen for roof-top equipment has wall structure spaced
outwardly from the curb for concealing the equipment from view. Fasteners
secured to generally horizontally extending support members are hooked
over the curb to secure the screen thereto without attaching the screen
to the underlying roof or the equipment thereon.
1. A screen for rooftop equipment mounted on an upstanding curb on a roof,
said curb presenting a pair of spaced sides, said screen comprising:wall
structure spaced outwardly from said curb for concealing said equipment
from view,a pair of laterally spaced, generally horizontally extending
support members within said structure,a first fastener secured to one of
said support members and engaging one of said sides of said curb,a second
fastener secured to the other of said support members and engaging the
other of said sides of said curb, andeach of said support members having
ends secured to said wall structure and comprising the sole support for
said wall structure, whereby the wall structure is secured to the curb
without attachment to the underlying roof or the equipment thereon.
2. The screen as claimed in claim 1, wherein each of said first and second fasteners comprises a hooked-shaped element receiving an upper edge of a corresponding wall of said curb.
3. A screen for rooftop equipment mounted on an upstanding curb on a roof, said curb presenting a pair of spaced sides, said screen comprising:wall structure spaced outwardly from said curb for concealing said equipment from view,a pair of laterally spaced, generally horizontally extending support members within said wall structure,a first fastener secured to one of said support members and supported exclusively by one of said sides of said curb,a second fastener secured to the other of said support members and supported exclusively by the other of said sides of said curb, andeach of said support members having ends secured to said wall structure, whereby the wall structure is secured to the curb without attachment to the underlying roof or the equipment thereon.
4. A screen for rooftop equipment mounted on an upstanding curb on a roof, said curb presenting a pair of spaced sides, said screen comprising:wall structure spaced outwardly from said curb for concealing said equipment from view,a pair of laterally spaced, generally horizontally extending support members within said wall structure,a first plurality of spaced, hook-shaped clips secured to one of said support members engaging one of said sides of said curb and hooked thereover,a second plurality of spaced, hook-shaped clips secured to the other of said support members, engaging the other of said sides of said curb and hooked thereover, andeach of said support members having ends secured to said wall structure, whereby the wall structure is secured to the curb without attachment to the underlying roof or the equipment thereon.
CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
This application claims the benefit of a prior filed, co-pending provisional application Ser. No. 60/958,508, filed Jul. 6, 2007, entitled CURB-MOUNTED SCREEN FOR ROOFTOP EQUIPMENT.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
This invention relates to a screen for an air conditioner or other equipment mounted on the roof of a building and supported by an upstanding curb.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
Air conditioning units and other mechanical equipment are often located on the roof of commercial buildings and other non-residential structures above an opening in the roof through which the necessary mechanical and electrical connections are made. The unit is typically supported on a rectangular curb in register with the opening that projects upwardly from the rooftop and provides the base upon which the unit is supported. However, it is often desired that air conditioners or other curb-mounted mechanical structures, otherwise in plain view, be screened for aesthetic purposes to provide the building with a more pleasing appearance.
A typical rooftop screen for this purpose is in the form of a rectangular fence, open at the top, preferably having an architecturally pleasing appearance and surrounding the equipment to conceal it from view. The screen is typically attached to the roof or the air conditioning unit. This adds to the cost and labor of installation. Furthermore, if the screen is attached to the unit there is a risk that the installers will insert screws or other fasteners into (Docket 4171) the casing of the unit that could cause damage and possible malfunction of the equipment. An alternative in the prior art is to mount the screen on the roof but with accompanying installation expense.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
In an embodiment of the present invention the aforementioned problem is addressed by providing a screen for rooftop equipment which is mounted on the curb provided on the roof to support the equipment. Horizontal support members of the screen assembly are provided with fasteners that hook over the roof curb to thereby support the screen without attachment to either the equipment on the curb or the underlying roof.
In another aspect of the invention, the horizontal support members of the screen assembly are provided with spaced fasteners comprising hook-shaped clips engaging the upper edges of the curb and hooked thereover to mount the support members exclusively on the curb without attachment to the underlying roof or the equipment thereon.
Other advantages of this invention will become apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, wherein is set forth by way of illustration and example, an embodiment of the present invention.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a building provided with an equipment screen according to the present invention.
FIG. 2 is an isometric view showing the screen of the present invention mounted on a roof curb and circumscribing an air conditioning unit, panels of the screen in the foreground being removed to reveal the interior construction.
FIG. 3 is an isometric view similar to FIG. 2 but with the air conditioning unit removed to reveal the roof curb and screen construction.
FIG. 4 is an exploded, detail view showing a support rail of the screen assembly and accompanying clips before installation on the roof curb (shown fragmentarily).
FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4 but from the opposite side, showing the support rail installed with the clips hooked over the upper edge of the roof curb.
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary, elevational detail view showing the support rail installed on one side of the roof curb.
FIG. 7 is an enlarged, vertical cross-sectional view of a wall of the roof curb showing a support rail and an associated clip hooked over the upper edge of the curb.
FIG. 8 is a simplified, plan view of the screen shown in FIG. 3.
Referring initially to FIGS. 1 and 2, a flat or substantially flat roof 10 of a commercial building presents an essentially horizontal supporting surface from which an upstanding, rectangular curb 12 projects. As will be discussed more fully hereinbelow, the curb 12 extends upwardly from the edges of a rectangular opening 14 in roof 10 revealed in FIGS. 3 and 8. Roof-mounted mechanical equipment, illustrated herein by an air conditioning unit 16, is shown installed on the curb 12 in FIG. 2 in the usual manner in order to communicate with the ductwork within the building. The curb 12 has four vertical walls 18a, 18b, 18c & 18d (see FIG. 8) defining a rectangular configuration in register with the opening 14 thereby presenting an open central area beneath the air conditioning unit 16 for receiving the ductwork and electrical conduits (not shown) connected to the AC unit 16 in the usual manner to permit operation of the unit 16 at the rooftop location. As seen in FIG. 3 where the unit 16 is removed, horizontal upper edges 20 of the respective curb walls 18a-d lie in a common horizontal plane and thereby define a rim of the curb 12 upon which the unit 16 is mounted.
A rooftop screen 22 is shown in FIGS. 1-3 and 8 surrounding the curb 12 and, as shown in FIG. 1, completely conceals the unit 16 from view at elevations beneath the roof 10. As is typical, the screen 22 has a rectangular configuration and thus presents four walls, each of which is defined by spaced, upper and lower horizontal frame members 24 and 26 and four corner posts 28 thereby defining the four walls of the screen 22. In the particular screen 22 illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2, the four vertical wall frames defined by frame members 24, 26 and corner posts 28 support a series of elongated, vertical panels 30 arranged side-by-side in each of the wall frames to screen the unit 16 from view. These wall panels 30 may be finished in an architecturally pleasing style as is conventional, and may be removable to provide access to the unit when necessary for maintenance or repairs. In FIGS. 2 and 3 a number of the panels are removed from the frames in the foreground to reveal details of construction discussed above and to be set forth below.
The screen 22 is secured to the curb 12 without the use of fasteners that engage either the roof 10 or any part of the unit 16. As seen in FIGS. 2, 3 and 8, a pair of horizontal support rails 32 and 34 extend horizontally along two opposed sides of the rectangular curb 12. Each of the support rails 32, 34 extends across the screen 22 from a lower frame member 36 in the foreground of FIGS. 2 and 3 to a parallel, lower frame member 38 at the rear, both of which are rigidly secured to the parallel members 26 of the lower frame. Three spaced fasteners 40 secure the support rail 32 to one side of the curb 12 and three additional fasteners 40 secure support rail 34 to the opposite side of curb 12. Although two rails 32 and 34 are shown, it should be understood that support rails on three or all four sides of the curb 12 may be employed in a particular application if desired. Furthermore, the configuration of the screen 22 may be other than rectangular, and other wall configurations (such as a three-wall screen) may be employed as required to provide the desired screening.
The manner of securing the support rails 32 and 34 to the curb 12 is shown in detail in FIGS. 4-7. Although other materials may be used, the rectangular curb 12 illustrated herein is formed from galvanized steel sheet (such as 14 gauge) which presents the four walls 18a, 18b, 18c and 18d. Wall 18b is shown in detail in the vertical cross-section of FIG. 7. Wall 18b is exemplary and is provided with an integral base flange 42b overlying the corresponding edge of the opening 14 (FIGS. 2 and 3). The other walls 18a, 18c and 18d are likewise provided with base flanges that rest on roof 10 at the margin of opening 14. Flange 42a, for example, is shown in FIGS. 2, 3 and 8.
Referring to FIG. 4, three spaced clips 40 are shown secured to support rail 32 and, in FIG. 5, are shown in place on curb wall 18b. Details are revealed in FIG. 7, each clip 40 being generally hook-shaped and extending upwardly from support rail 32 and over the upper edge of wall 18b (or 18d) of roof curb 12 and terminating in a downturned lip 46. Steel clips may be utilized and welded to the support rail or, as illustrated, secured by screws 41. As may be appreciated in FIGS. 4, 5 and 7, the upper edge 44 of the wall 18b presents an inverted U-shaped configuration thereby presenting a flat surface over which clips 40 are installed. If desired, each support clip 40 may be secured in its installed position by a screw 47 through the downturned lip 46 of clip 40 and wall 18b.
As shown in FIGS. 3 and 8, three support clips 40 are used on two opposed sides of the roof curb 12 to secure the screen 22. Three clips 40 are secured to support rail 34 in the same manner to mount rail 34 on curb wall 18d. This is an example only and additional clips may be employed as necessary depending upon the particular installation. A wood strip 50 seen in FIGS. 4, 5 and 7 provides a nailer for roofing material (not shown) surrounding the opening 14.
The support clips 40 are employed exclusively as the means of securing the support rails 32 and 34 on the curb 12 and thereby mounting the screen 22 at the rooftop location. As the support clips hook over the upper edge of the roof curb, there is no attachment to the underlying roof 10 or the AC unit 16. Though shown and described in a screen application for unit 16, it will be appreciated that the curb-mounted screen of the present invention may also be advantageously utilized with other curb-mounted rooftop equipment.
It should be understood that while certain forms of this invention have been illustrated and described, it is not limited thereto except insofar as such limitations are included in the following claims.
Patent applications in class RIGID BARRIER CANTILEVERED FROM VERTICAL SUPPORT
Patent applications in all subclasses RIGID BARRIER CANTILEVERED FROM VERTICAL SUPPORT