Definition of brake noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//breɪk//
    ; NAmE NAmE//breɪk//
    Driving, Parts of a car
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  1. 1a device for slowing or stopping a vehicle to put/slam on the brakes the brake pedal She stopped with a squeal/screech of the brakes. CollocationsDrivingHaving a car have/​own/(British English) run a car ride a motorcycle/​motorbike drive/​prefer/​use an automatic/​a manual/(North American English, informal) a stick shift have/​get your car serviced/​fixed/​repaired buy/​sell a used car/(especially British English) a second-hand car take/​pass/​fail a (British English) driving test/(both North American English) driver’s test/​road test get/​obtain/​have/​lose/​carry a/​your (British English) driving licence/(North American English) driver’s licenseDriving put on/​fasten/(North American English) buckle/​wear/​undo your seat belt/​safety belt put/​turn/​leave the key in the ignition start the car/​engine (British English) change/(North American English) shift/​put something into gear press/​put your foot on the brake pedal/​clutch/​accelerator release the clutch/(especially British English) the handbrake/(both North American English) the emergency brake/​the parking brake drive/​park/​reverse the car (British English) indicate left/​right (especially North American English) signal that you are turning left/​right take/​miss (British English) the turning/(especially North American English) the turn apply/​hit/​slam on the brake(s) beep/​honk/(especially British English) toot/(British English) sound your hornProblems and accidents a car skids/​crashes (into something)/collides (with something) swerve to avoid an oncoming car/​a pedestrian crash/​lose control of the car have/​be in/​be killed in/​survive a car crash/​a car accident/(North American English) a car wreck/​a hit-and-run be run over/​knocked down by a car/​bus/​truck dent/​hit (British English) the bonnet/(North American English) the hood break/​crack/​shatter (British English) the windscreen/(North American English) the windshield blow/(especially British English) burst/​puncture (British English) a tyre/(North American English) a tire get/​have (British English) a flat tyre/​a flat tire/​a puncture inflate/​change/​fit/​replace/​check a tyre/​tire Traffic and driving regulations be caught in/​get stuck in/​sit in a traffic jam cause congestion/​tailbacks/​traffic jams/​gridlock experience/​face lengthy delays beat/​avoid the traffic/​the rush hour break/​observe/(North American English) drive the speed limit be caught on (British English) a speed camera stop somebody for/​pull somebody over for/(British English, informal) be done for speeding (both informal) run/(British English) jump a red light/​the lights be arrested for/​charged with (British English) drink-driving/(both US English) driving under the influence (DUI)/driving while intoxicated (DWI) be banned/(British English) disqualified from driving see also air brake, disc brake, footbrake, handbrake See related entries: Driving, Parts of a car
  2. 2brake (on something) a thing that stops something or makes it difficult High interest rates are a brake on the economy.
  3. Word Originlate 18th cent.: of unknown origin.Extra examples Is the brake on? My brakes are not working properly. She slammed on the brakes to try to avoid the dog. The car crashed after its brakes failed. The need to earn some money put the brakes on my wilder ambitions. We heard the screech of brakes, followed by a loud crash. High interest rates will act as a brake on the economy.Idioms
    jam on the brake(s), jam the brake(s) on
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    to operate the brakes on a vehicle suddenly and with force The car skidded as he jammed on the brakes.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: brake