If you’re serious about expanding your business outside of your hometown or online, applying for a trademark is a good idea
A trademark can help protect your logo or symbol by prohibiting other companies from using it.
When you apply for a trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), they will ask you to file under one or more of the 45 different trademark classes. Each class represents a different product or service.
In this article, we’ll cover the basics of Trademark Class 11, which broadly covers all types of appliances.
Why Are There Different Classes?
The USPTO uses different trademark classes to categorize products and services into similar groups. By dividing trademarks into different classes, two companies can file using the same mark or name as long as they file under different classes.
The different classes allow for two companies with the same name to apply for a trademark, as long as they file under different classes.
For example, the name “Vanguard” can refer to both a financial services company and a company that makes gas logs for fireplaces. The USPTO can approve both trademarks because the companies are filing under different classes and make products for two different kinds of consumers.
The key here is a “lack of consumer confusion.”
As long as companies using similar operate in different industries, there should be little to no consumer confusion. This is because customers are unlikely to, for example, go to the gas log Vanguard’s website to open a retirement account.
The Class 11 Trademark
Trademark class 11 specifically deals with appliance goods. These can be appliances for cooking and cleaning, heating and cooling, and ventilation.
Basically, any industrial or home appliance used to clean, cook, or move air will file their trademark under this class. We’ll list some of the most common goods filed under Class 11 below.
Food Heating, Cooling, and Preparation
Most home kitchen appliances are filed under Class 11. Conventional products such as ovens, refrigerators, and microwaves can all be found here. Smaller appliances such as coffee makers, bread makers, and pressure cookers can also be found in this category.
Similarly, Class 11 also includes appliances you find in industrial kitchens, such as deep fryers, hot plates, roasting spits and rotisseries, large freezers, ice machines, and beverage coolers.
Items for Personal Heating and Drying
Hair dryers, hand dryers, and electric fans are all in this class as well.
Provided they don’t have a medical use, some types of hot water bottles, heating pads, and electric blankets will also fall under Class 11.
Home Exhaust Systems
This falls into the “moving air” category. Home exhaust systems include products such as chimney flues and blowers.
Coffee filters, water filters, and air conditioning filters are all in this class.
Similarly, equipment for treating the air in your home, such as ionizers, air purifying and air deodorizing machines, can also be found here.
Speaking of air – all heating, ventilation, and air conditioning machines are in Class 11. This includes all parts of HVAC systems, not just in houses, but also in motor vehicles.
Boilers and Heaters
The Class 11 trademark category also covers the burners and boilers that are found in industrial ovens or incinerators. This class also covers other related parts of the burner or boiler, such as certain heating elements, thermostats, and valves.
Lighting and Reflectors
All types of lighting equipment, such as ceiling lights, appliance lights, Christmas lights, aquarium lights, and LED lights, also fall under this category.
Additionally, Class 11 covers the filaments and materials that make the up the bulbs themselves.
In a related manner, all forms of lamp shades, portable lights (flashlights and lamps), vehicle lights, and light reflectors (such as the ones you’d find on a bicycle) will also file for trademark
Water Purifying and Heating Appliances
Water purifying and heating appliances also appear in this category. Products such as water filters, water filtration devices for swimming pools, and water heaters all file under this class.
Interestingly, if you trademark a fire hydrant design you’d also register under this class.
Most brands relating to sinks and sink fixtures will also register under this class. Similarly, toilets, bathtubs, and all related fixtures are also covered by Class 11.
Many fixtures that you would find in a public bathroom or spa are included in this category as well. These can include products such as urinals, saunas, whirlpool spas, steam rooms, and decorative fountains
Finally, all the pipes that connect these appliances to the water supply are included in Class 11 as well.
Related Products That Do Not Fall Under Class 11
If you’re not sure if your product falls under Class 11, consider talking to an attorney to see if you need to file under one of these two closely related classes:
- Class 7: Machines – For all appliances that are meant to make steam, but not heat.
- Class 9: Electric and Scientific Devices – Heated jackets, pants or other clothing generally fall under Class9.
The Class 11 trademark category includes all kinds of appliances, both household and industrial. This includes all appliances used for heating and cooling, purifying, and ventilation.
Before you submit your trademark application, make sure that you’re familiar with all of the relevant trademark classes. Otherwise, you might end up filing under the wrong class and have to spend additional time and money fixing the problem.
For this reason, it’s highly recommended that you contact an experienced trademark attorney to help you understand the trademark classes and choose the appropriate class.
A lawyer can also make sure you aren’t infringing on another company’s trademark before you go through the application process.