Patents - No-cost Searching Websites

  • European Patent Office: This site offers simple searches on bibliographic data in patent documents. The default printing option is page by page only, but they are free. To print an entire patent: Search for a patent; click on a title, and when the page loads, click on the original document tab; when this page displays, the printer icon is grayed out, but click on "Save Full Document" at the top of the page, then read the screen and enter the letters shown; the entire document will load as a pdf, and all the pages can be printed.
  • Patents, U.S. (Google) About Google Patent search: Provides simple and advanced searches of U.S. patents; produces PDF files
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Database A good site to search for most recent US patents, this resource searches front-page information in U.S. patents since 1790 and full-text information in U.S. patents issued from 1976 to the Tuesday prior to today's date (U.S. patents are issued every Tuesday). Full-text images can be downloaded free page by page only as TIFF files.  More information on how to access and view U.S. Patent Full-Page Images is available online. Search Note: Patent images are only accessible from the full-text display of each patent. Patent images must be retrieved one page at a time because patents can be as long as five thousand pages, and the resources required to download such jumbo patents are not available.
  • FreepatentsOnline: Millions of U.S. patents are searchable, with one PDF per patent. Future plans are to add U.S. applications.
  • DEPATISnet Information: This database contains U.S. (1790+), EP (1978+) and WO (1978+) as well as patents from the following countries: DE-1877+, DD-1946+, AT-1920+, CH-1888+, FR-1920+, GB-1920+, JP-1976+.  The site, which available in English and German, includes patents and applications as well as links to the full text of patents. Full-text images can be downloaded as PDF files - page by page - for free.
  • SurfIP: This resource's contents are US-1790+, WO-97+, EP-97+, CH, CA, Taiwan and Singapore patents, and JP patent abstracts.  Registration is required. Searching can be combines with search engines such as Google and business databases like Hoovers.  Full-text images can be downloaded free as PDF files page by page only.
  • International Patent Offices
  • Patent Information Users Group
  • US Patent and Trademark Office

Patent Depository Libraries

Patent Guides

Patent Tutorials

The University of Texas Engineering Library has produced two excellent online tutorials that show some of the steps in performing a patent or trademark search at any patent and trademark depository library.  Some minor parts of the search are different at the Los Angeles Public Library, but those are very minor.