EP2348151B1 - Method for operating a washing machine with flow device - Google Patents

Method for operating a washing machine with flow device Download PDF

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Publication number
EP2348151B1
EP2348151B1 EP10401014.5A EP10401014A EP2348151B1 EP 2348151 B1 EP2348151 B1 EP 2348151B1 EP 10401014 A EP10401014 A EP 10401014A EP 2348151 B1 EP2348151 B1 EP 2348151B1
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Prior art keywords
speed
drum
laundry
washing liquid
washing
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EP10401014.5A
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German (de)
French (fr)
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EP2348151A1 (en
Inventor
Dirk Sieding
Helge Müller
Rainer Bicker
Patrick Dummeier
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Miele und Cie KG
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Miele und Cie KG
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    • DTEXTILES; PAPER
    • D06TREATMENT OF TEXTILES OR THE LIKE; LAUNDERING; FLEXIBLE MATERIALS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • D06FLAUNDERING, DRYING, IRONING, PRESSING OR FOLDING TEXTILE ARTICLES
    • D06F39/00Details of washing machines not specific to a single type of machines covered by groups D06F9/00 - D06F27/00 
    • D06F39/08Liquid supply or discharge arrangements
    • D06F39/083Liquid discharge or recirculation arrangements

Description

  • The invention relates to a method for operating a washing machine with a tub for holding washing liquid for treating laundry, a radiator and a Umfluteinrichtung, the method comprises a washing phase with activated radiator for heating the washing liquid and activated Umfluteinrichtung, the washing liquid from the lower Area of the tub in the upper area, based on the operational installation position of the washing machine promotes (see EP-A-0 726 349 ). For washing laundry in a drum washing machine, the laundry is moved in the rotating drum, whereby the wetting of the laundry with the washing liquid and the washing mechanism are effected. In this case, there is water in the tub or in the drum, wherein the dirt is flushed out by the movement of the laundry. In order to bring the wash as completely as possible in connection with the laundry, it is known to promote by means of a Umfluteinrichtung the washing liquid from the lower region of the tub or from the drainage channel in the upper region, so that the laundry located in the drum from above Be sprinkled washing liquid. With simultaneous drum rotation a good mixing of the laundry with the washing liquid is achieved. Furthermore, by avoiding dead volume, good utilization of the water or of the detergent is achieved. Such a method for operating such a washing machine is from the DE 34 01 899 A1 known. Here, water is added at the beginning of the washing phase with the addition of detergent in a room in the lower region of the tub, wherein the water or the laundry detergent added with washing does not come into contact with the laundry. Thereafter, the liquor is heated within the room and thereby circulated. After the detergent is dissolved and the detergent added with the washing liquid has reached the predetermined temperature, the actual circulating device is activated, that is, the laundry is acted upon by the washing liquid. In this case, it is complicated that a plurality of channels and controllable valves are necessary for the corresponding method to be carried out. Furthermore, an increased time is required compared to a normal washing phase, since the detergent dissolution is performed separately before the wetting section. Furthermore, more washing liquid must be provided because the space below the tub takes up a significant portion of the free liquor.
  • From the EP 0 726 349 A1 For example, a method of operating a washing machine is known in which a flooding device is temporarily activated while the drum is being rotated at application speed. At other times, the drum is rotated at a reduced speed so that the laundry is moved within the drum, during which time the flooding device is not activated. With an increased speed is deliberately rotated only at the beginning of the washing phase to prevent the laundry from adhering to the drum thereafter. It is therefore no longer rotated at increased speed, which is at the expense of water efficiency.
  • From the GB 2 204 328 A It is also known, in a method for operating a washing machine for improved washing detergent to activate a flooding device. Here, the washing liquid is preheated before the flooding is activated.
  • The invention is therefore based on the object to provide a method with improved washing action and to reduce the energy consumption and / or the total duration of the washing process.
  • The object is achieved by a method having the features of claim 1. Advantageous embodiments will be apparent from the respective dependent claims.
  • The essential advantage of the method according to the invention is that in a simple manner an improvement in the washing effect and a reduction in the washing time and the energy consumption compared to a conventional washing phase with circulating are achieved. Elaborate design measures are not necessary here. Although sensors, such as pressure sensors and temperature sensor are needed, but they are inexpensive to install accordingly or they are already present in a conventional washing machine. The control of the washing process is achieved by the adaptation of the computer program for the control device.
  • In the method according to the invention, it is provided that at the beginning of the washing phase a thorough moistening section is carried out with the following steps:
  1. a) introducing an amount of water with the addition of detergent in the tub, the amount of water is such that a complete saturation of the laundry is not achieved, and rotating the drum in reversing rhythm at a first speed below the application speed,
  2. b) activating the flooding device until the level of the washing liquid reaches a lower limit,
  3. c) rotating the drum at a second speed, which is higher than the first speed and above the application speed, whereby a spin effect with expulsion of washing liquid from the laundry and an increase in the level of the washing liquid up on an upper value is effected
  4. d) turning the drum at the first speed until the level reaches the lower limit,
wherein in steps c) and d) the circulating device is continuously activated.
  • In an expedient development, the steps c) and d) are repeated several times and only then deactivated the Umfluteinrichtung. As a result, thorough mixing of the laundry with the small amount of washing liquid is achieved.
  • It is advantageous that steps c) and d) are repeated 2 to 10 times. In this case, step d) requires approximately 1.5 to 4 times the time that is provided for step c).
  • In a further advantageous embodiment, the circulating device is operated at a lower delivery rate in step d) than in step c. As a result, the lowering of the level can be slowed down somewhat, as a result of which step d) can last in each case.
  • After completion of the moistening phase as listed above or otherwise, the heating section begins within the washing phase. In order to achieve as energy-efficient heating as possible in a rather short duration, this section comprises the steps:
    • e) rotating the drum at a second speed that is higher than the first speed (n1) and above the apply speed, thereby causing a spin effect with expulsion of wash fluid from the laundry and an increase in the level of the wash fluid to an upper limit becomes,
    • f) turning the drum at the first speed below the application speed,
    • g) activating the heating body to heat the washing liquid until the temperature of the washing liquid reaches or exceeds an upper limit,
    • h) turning off the radiator and activating the flooding device until a lower limit is reached,
    wherein steps e) to h) are repeated several times.
  • In an advantageous embodiment, the upper limit of the temperature for the washing liquid is set higher than the user-selected set temperature for the laundry treatment. As a result, a quick heating of the washing liquid is achieved, wherein the laundry to be treated with the overheated liquor comes into contact only briefly, since there is no flooding when overheating.
  • It is expedient that the upper limit in the range of 5 ° C to 10 ° C is higher than the setpoint for the lye temperature. Short-term overheating in this temperature range Do not lead to damage to the laundry, increased wear on the laundry or visible discoloration.
  • After the heating section as described above, the post-washing phase, in which the circulating device is active and the radiator is switched off, is followed by the following steps
    • i) turning the drum at the first speed below the apply speed until the level reaches the lower limit,
    • j) rotating the drum at a second speed higher than the first speed and above the apply speed, thereby causing a spin effect with expulsion of wash fluid from the laundry and an increase in the level of the wash fluid to an upper level,
    wherein steps i) and j) are repeated several times. This cools the lye off,
    wherein due to the strong flow of the liquor through the laundry in conjunction with the movement of the laundry within the drum a good and gentle washing effect is achieved.
  • In an advantageous development, after the heating-up phase, the post-washing phase takes place with the heating element switched off and the drum rotating at the first rotational speed to provide a wash for a predetermined time, comprising the following steps
    • k) adding an additional amount of water until a higher level is reached,
    • I) Activate the flooding device. As a result, the washing effect is further improved with optimal care.
  • Overall, it is expedient that the first speed is in the range of 30 1 / min to 70 1 / min. As a result, a good wash fall is achieved with usual household drum sizes. For the second speed, a range of 300 1 / min to 700 1 / min is provided, so that in the usual drum size, a concern of the laundry items on the drum shell and expelling the liquor is achieved from the laundry, without too much mechanical stress on the laundry , The speeds deviate from the critical speed range, where the imbalance leads the most to vibrations, so that a safe and quiet run is provided.
  • In a further expedient embodiment, at least in steps c) and j), a monitoring of foam formation is activated, wherein steps c) or j) are respectively ended only after the recognition of foam. As a result, the drum can be rotated longer with the so-called high speed, resulting in a shortened or improved moisture penetration or washing effect.
  • According to a not claimed embodiment, a washing machine is further proposed with a tub for holding washing liquid for treating laundry, a horizontally rotatably mounted drum in the tub, a motor for rotating the drum, a radiator, a Umfluteinrichtung, a water inlet device, a sensor for detection the liquid level in the tub, a temperature sensor for detecting the temperature of the washing liquid and a control means for controlling the individual phases of the selected washing program, wherein the control means is in operative connection with the sensors and configured for the Umfluteinrichtung, the radiator, the water inlet device and the motor for turning the drum according to the method of any of the above embodiments or developments to activate or deactivate or turn on or off. The sensors are in communication with the controller. As a sensor for the level, for example, a pressure sensor can be used which is connected to an air trap on the tub in the lower region by means of a hose line. Alternatively, conductance sensors may also be attached to the tub wall, which then provide a signal to the controller when covered by wash liquid. Other sensors are also possible, with the controller then having to be configured accordingly.
  • According to an embodiment not claimed, the temperature sensor and the sensor for detecting the liquid level are arranged in the sump of the suds container. As a result, the temperature of the fairly small amount of Waschflüssigkiet can be detected reliably and accurately.
  • According to a non-claimed embodiment, the washing machine comprises a further sensor for detecting the liquid level or pressure in a Umflutleitung the Umfluteinrichtung. This ensures that the flooding is always reliable and the circulating pump can be switched off as soon as there is no more caustic in the circulating line.
  • An embodiment of the invention is shown purely schematically in the drawings and will be described in more detail below. Show it:
  • Fig. 1:
    a washing machine in a sketched sectional view,
    Fig. 2:
    a washing program as a diagram in chronological order and
    3 and 4:
    the control of the drum, the radiator and the Umfluteinrichtung in time sequence.
  • In Fig. 1 is a purely schematic representation of a washing machine 1, shown with a tub 2. The position and direction information refer to the operational installation position of the washing machine 1. Within the tub 2 a rotatably mounted and driven by an electric motor 13 drum 3 is arranged, which moves the laundry items located in the tub 2 8. The drum 3 is made in the present embodiment of stainless steel and provided with a plurality of openings for the flooding. The housing 4 has a loading opening 9, via which the interior of the drum 3 can be reached through the sealing sleeve 6. The loading opening 9 can be closed by means of a door 5. In the lower region of the tub 2, a radiator 7 is arranged, which can heat the washing liquid in the tub. In the upper part of the machine 1, an inlet valve 15 is sketched, which provides the running in of the water from the supply network. About the Einspülkasten 11, the water is passed through the connecting pipe 14 in the tub 2, wherein in the dispenser 11 entered detergent is flushed into the tub 2. Below the tub 2, a drain device 12 is arranged, which leads the spent washing liquid or the rinse water from the tub 2 to the drain line 12c, which usually opens into a sewer. The control device 18 controls the inlet valve 15, the activity of the drain device 12 or the drain pump 12a, the drive motor 13, which is energized via the power unit or a frequency converter 16, and the radiator 7. In the lower part of the tub 2, based on the Bertriebsgemäße Installation position of the washing machine, the pump 17a is mounted a Umfluteinrichtung. The pump 17a is connected to the drain pipe 12b on the inlet side and suction side, respectively, and can convey the washing liquid 19 therein through the pipe 17b into the upper portion of the tub 2 and the drum 3, respectively. The washing liquid 19 is injected or flows onto the laundry items 8 through the nozzle or the outlet 17c.
  • In Fig. 1 is also shown that the washing machine below the tub 2 has an additional sump 24, in which wash liquor 19 can collect. In the sump 24, the radiator 7 and a temperature sensor 22 are arranged or integrated. Below the sump 24 is a pressure sensor 21. Optionally, there is another pressure sensor 23 in the circulating circuit 17, here in the line 17b.
  • In Fig. 2 By way of example, a complete sequence of a washing program WP is shown in a diagram. The individual phases or temporal sections within the wash program WP are shown on the time axis t. The program sequence WP shown here comprises a washing phase Wa, a rinsing phase Sp and a spinning phase Sc. In these individual phases of the water inlet 15 and the outlet 12 is controlled accordingly. Also the radiator 7 and the circulating device 17 are controlled accordingly to heat the washing liquid 19 to the predetermined temperature. At the beginning of the washing phase WA the Durchfeuchtungsabschhnitt DF is performed, in which the laundry 8 is wetted with liquid 19 and moistened. In this section DF, water is introduced into the purging device 11, whereby the processing agent stored therein, such as washing powder, is introduced into the tub 2 through the connection pipe 14.
  • This is followed by the heating-up section Hz, in which the washing liquid is heated by means of the heating element 7 switched on to the temperature preset by the control device 18 by the selected program. After reaching the predetermined temperature of the radiator 7 is turned off and the so-called Nachwaschabschnitt Na follows. In this Nachwaschabschnitt Na, the laundry 8 is moved by means of rotating drum 3, wherein the washing liquid 19 cools. The washing phase Wa is ended with the pumping, wherein the drain device 12, in particular the pump 12a or a drain valve is activated. When pumping can also be spun so that the scrubbing added with detergent washing liquid 19 is removed from the fabric of the laundry items 8.
  • This is followed by the flushing section Sp, in which fresh water is introduced into the tub and the items of laundry 8 are moved therein. At the end of the rinsing section, the rinse water is pumped out, followed by the final spin Sc for dewatering the laundry items 8. In the final spin, the drum 3 is rotated at a higher speed compared to the washing process, in which the laundry items 8 abut the drum shell and the water or the washing liquid is thrown out of the fabric due to the centrifugal force out through the drum openings. The drain device 12 is activated in this case, so that the liquid is removed from the tub 2.
  • A major problem in the process of wet cleaning is the uniform moisture penetration of the laundry 8. It must be several times ejected wash liquor 19, and returned to the laundry 8, to achieve a uniform moisture. Since wash liquor 19 collects in the tub 2 during spinning, massive foam problems may also occur. To counteract these problems, special measures must be taken for the moisture Df and the heating Hz of the laundry. The individual phases of the washing process are adapted in a special way.
  • In Fig. 3 is the Durchfeuchtungsabschnitt DF schematically shown in a diagram.
  • Water inlet:
  • In the first water inlet 1-1, the detergent is flushed into the tub 2. The inflowing amount of water is kept so low that a complete saturation of the laundry 8 with wash liquor 19 is not possible. In order to distribute the liquor 19 uniformly in the laundry 8, first wet 1-2 is first performed. The laundry 8 is thereby at the rotational speed n 1 in a conventional rotational rhythm with a speed less than the application speed moves until the liquid level reaches or exceeds an upper value Niv3. From then the water inlet 15 is stopped and the liquor 19 flooded. As appropriate speed 30 to 60 1 / min is set in a household washing machine. This is done until time 2-1a, when the liquid level in the tub 2 has fallen below the predetermined level Niv 2 .
  • Since, after the first moistening or water intake, a uniform distribution of the liquor 19 in the laundry 8 can not yet be assumed, the actual moisture penetration takes place in the period 2-1a to 2-3b. The moistening phase consists of purge spinner cycles and wet overflow cycles which are called several times in succession. In the flooding spin 2-1a to 2-1 b, the drum is brought to speeds n 2 above the application speed of the laundry 8. So lye 19 is expelled from the laundry 8. At the same time, the circulating pump 17a is running and the ejected liquor 19 is again injected into the laundry 8. The circulating centrifugal process is always carried out only for a short time, for example 1 to 3 minutes, so that no foam can form. In the subsequent Durchfeuchtumfluten 2-1 b to 2-2a, a normal washing rhythm is driven with a drum speed n1 below the application speed. The still existing expelled liquor 19 is conveyed via the circulating pump 17a into the laundry 8. During the Durchfeuchtumflutens the wash liquor 19 also spreads by suction effects in the laundry 8. If the liquid level in the tub has fallen below the predetermined level Niv2 (time 2-2a), then a flooding spin is started again. The change of circulating centrifuges and Durchfeuchtumfluten is carried out several times in succession until it can be assumed that a uniform moistening of the laundry 8. Due to the constant change of the two phases, a uniform moisture penetration of the entire laundry 8 is achieved with minimal foaming. Towards the end of the moistening phase, it is optionally possible to perform a normal washing cycle at a low speed n1. This allows the detergent ingredients, which become active at low temperature, to work even more effectively.
  • In Fig. 4 the heating section HZ is shown schematically in a diagram. The time points on the time axis t are given here only symbolically, in the real process, these markings correspond to a time unit.
  • The heating phase is realized with a conventional radiator in a sump 24. The laundry 8 is first brought to the time point 3-1 a back to a speed n2 above the application speed. As a result, lye 19 is expelled from the laundry 8, which collects in the sump 24. If the sump 24 is filled to the predetermined level Niv 2 , the speed is reduced again to the normal washing speed n1. From the time 3-1 b of the radiator 7 is turned on, so that the expelled liquor 19 is now heated by the radiator 7 located in the extended sump 14.
  • By the temperature sensor 22 while the temperature of the liquor 19 is monitored in the sump 24. If the desired maximum temperature T max is reached, the circulating device 17 is activated or the circulating pump 17 a is switched on and the heater 7 is switched off. As a result, the heated liquor 19 is returned to the laundry 8 in the period 3-1 c to 3-2a. In this example, the drum 3 is rotated at normal washing speed n1. In the time interval 3-1 c to 3-2a, the level of the washing liquid decreases until the lower level Niv2 is reached. From this point in time 3-2a, the flooding spin is again activated, with the drum 3 being rotated at high speed n2 until time 3-2c. The three steps listed are repeated until the average liquor temperature corresponds to the desired setpoint temperature T soll . The setpoint temperature Tsoll is below the temperature Tmax at which the shutdown of the radiator 7 takes place.
    By this heating method, the foaming can be minimized, but still a uniform heating of the laundry 8 can be achieved. When the heating is complete (3-5), a normal washing cycle is carried out to allow the temperature activated components of the detergent to act. The drum 3 is hereby rotated at normal speed n1, in which the so-called laundry event takes place.
  • At the beginning of Nachwaschzeit Na another inflow of water takes place 4-1 until the leach level reaches a higher value Niv3. Since all temperature-relevant processes are completed, a slight cooling of the liquor 19, for example by 5 ° C to 10 ° C can be accepted. It is added so much water that the total amount of alkali in the process is comparable to that of a conventional washing process. Subsequently, from the time 4-2 the washing process is carried out with a conventional washing rhythm at a drum speed n1 with simultaneous operation of the circulating pump 17a. Thus, the mechanical washing effect is the same or possibly even better than that of a conventional washing process. At time 4-3, the wash phase is WA finished, so that here the rinse phase SP and, if necessary, the spin phase Sc can connect.
  • Due to the advantageous detergent dissolution and the better moisture penetration of the laundry, the overall sequence of the washing program WP can be shortened, the amount of detergent can be reduced and / or the washing effect can be improved.
  • The Umwutschleudern performed in the phases Durchfeuchtung Df and heating Hz ensures a strong foaming, especially if the liquid level in the tub 2 is so high that the rotating drum 3 comes into contact with wash liquor. It then comes to an increased power consumption and finally to a drop in speed at the drive motor 13. Therefore, the formation of foam must be detected in good time. This is possible either by reading the engine speed or the motor current. The engine speed can be read out via the tachogenerator already used in the engines today. The evaluation of the motor current can be done on drives with frequency inverters 16 or brushless motors via the control electronics.
  • Claims (12)

    1. Method for operating a washing machine (1) comprising a suds container (2) for receiving washing liquid (19) for treating laundry (8), and comprising a heating member (7) and a circulation device (17), the method comprising a washing phase (WA) using the heating member (7), which is switched on, for heating the washing liquid (19) and the activated circulation device (17) which conveys the washing liquid (19) from the lower region of the suds container (2) into the upper region, relative to the operational installation position of the washing machine (1),
      characterised by
      a soaking stage (DF) at the start of the washing phase (WA), comprising the following steps:
      a) admitting an amount of water while adding detergent into the suds container (2), the amount of water being such that the items (8) to be washed are not completely saturated, and rotating the drum (3) in a reverse rhythm at a first speed (n1) that is below the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum,
      b) activating the circulation device (17) until the level of washing liquid (19) reaches a lower threshold value (Niv2),
      c) rotating the drum (3) at a second speed (n2) that is higher than the first speed (n1) and above the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum, which results in a spinning effect that expels washing liquid from the items (8) to be washed and a rise in the level of the washing liquid up to an upper value (Niv3),
      d) rotating the drum (3) at the first speed (n1) until the level reaches the lower threshold value (Niv 2),
      the circulation device (17, 17a) being activated in an uninterrupted manner in steps c) and d).
    2. Method according to claim 1, characterised in that steps c) and d) are repeated multiple times and the circulation device (17, 17a) is deactivated thereafter.
    3. Method according to claim 2, characterised in that steps c) and d) are repeated from 2 to 10 times.
    4. Method according to any of claims 1 to 3, characterised in that the circulation device (17, 17a) is operated at a lower flow rate in step d) than in step c).
    5. Method for operating a washing machine (1) according to any of claims 1 to 4, characterised in that a heating stage (HZ), for heating the washing liquid (19) to a predefined temperature, follows the soaking stage (DF), comprising the steps of:
      e) rotating the drum (3) at a second speed (n2) that is higher than the first speed (n1) and is above the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum, which results in a spinning effect that expels washing liquid from the items (8) to be washed and a rise in the level of the washing liquid up to an upper threshold value (Niv3)
      f) rotating the drum (3) at the first speed (n1) that is below the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum,
      g) activating the heating member (7) for heating up the washing liquid (19) until the temperature of the washing liquid reaches or exceeds an upper threshold value (Tmax),
      h) switching off the heating member (7) and activating the circulation device (17, 17a) until a lower threshold value (Niv 2) is reached,
      steps e) to h) being repeated multiple times.
    6. Method according to claim 5, characterised in that the upper threshold value of the temperature for the washing liquid (Tmax) is greater than the target temperature (Tsoll) selected by the user for the laundry treatment.
    7. Method according to claim 6, characterised in that the upper threshold value (Tmax) is greater than the target value (Tsoll) in the range of from 5 °C to 10 °C.
    8. Method according to claim 5, characterised in that, after the heating stage (HZ), the post-washing phase (NA) takes place when the circulation device (17, 17a) is activated, comprising the following steps:
      i) rotating the drum (3) at the first speed (n1) below the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum until the level reaches the lower threshold value (Niv 2),
      j) rotating the drum (3) at a second speed (n2) that is higher than the first speed (n1) and above the speed causing the laundry to be applied against the drum, which results in a spinning effect that expels washing liquid from the items (8) to be washed and a rise in the level of the washing liquid up to an upper level (Niv 3),
      steps i) and j) being repeated multiple times.
    9. Method according to claim 5, characterised in that, after the heating stage (Hz), the post-washing phase (Na) takes place when the heating member (7) is switched off, and the drum (3) is rotated at the first speed (n1) in order to provide a laundry drop for a predetermined period of time, comprising the following steps:
      k) admitting an additional amount of water until a higher level is reached (Niv 3),
      l) activating the circulation device (17, 17a).
    10. Method according to either claim 8 or claim 9, characterised in that, after the post-washing phase (Na), at least one rinsing phase (Sp) takes place in which the washing liquid (19) is removed from the suds container (2) and fresh water for rinsing the items (8) to be washed is admitted into the suds container (2).
    11. Method according to any of claims 1 to 5, 7 or 8, characterised in that the first speed (n1) is in the range of from 30 rpm to 70 rpm, and the second speed (n2) is in the range of from 300 rpm to 600 rpm.
    12. Method according to either claim 1 or claim 5, characterised in that, at least in steps c) and j), monitoring of foam formation is activated, steps c) or j) each being terminated only after the detection of foam.
    EP10401014.5A 2010-01-25 2010-01-25 Method for operating a washing machine with flow device Active EP2348151B1 (en)

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    Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
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    EP2348151B1 true EP2348151B1 (en) 2017-07-05

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