de·​rate | \ (ˌ)dē-ˈrāt How to pronounce derate (audio) \
derated; derating; derates

Definition of derate

transitive verb

: to lower the rated capability of (something, such as an electrical or mechanical apparatus) because of deterioration or inadequacy

Examples of derate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In 2014, Jalopnik's Rob Holland tried taking a Model S around the track, only for the battery to derate about three minutes in. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Elon Musk throws down with Porsche, sends a Model S to the Nürburgring," 6 Sep. 2019 The wheels are then derated to – that is, run at – 50 percent of maximum speed. Charles Platt, WIRED, "Re-Energizer," 1 May 2000

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'derate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of derate

1947, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about derate

Time Traveler for derate

Time Traveler

The first known use of derate was in 1947

See more words from the same year

Statistics for derate

Cite this Entry

“Derate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Jul. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on derate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with derate

Comments on derate

What made you want to look up derate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!