When you lubricate something, you make it a little bit greasy so it can easily move or slide. You might need to lubricate a rusted bolt in order to unscrew it, for example.

Mechanics who work on cars need to lubricate engine parts all the time, to remove old ones and attach new ones. Oil is commonly used to lubricate metal surfaces so they don't stick against each other. All different kinds of machines and engines — from jumbo jets to sewing machines — need to be lubricated in order to work properly. The Latin root word is lubricatus, "to make slippery or smooth," from lubricus, or "slippery."

Definitions of lubricate

v make slippery or smooth through the application of a lubricant

lubricate the key”
Type of:
alter, change, modify
cause to change; make different; cause a transformation

v apply a lubricant to

lubricate my car”
Type of:
fill, fill up, make full
make full, also in a metaphorical sense

v have lubricating properties

“the liquid in this can lubricates well”
Type of:
have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)

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