over·​heat | \ ˌō-vər-ˈhēt \
overheated; overheating; overheats

Definition of overheat

transitive verb

1 : to heat to excess
2 : to stimulate or agitate unduly

intransitive verb

: to become heated beyond a safe or desirable point

Examples of overheat in a Sentence

I overheated the food in the microwave. Be careful not to overheat the engine.

Recent Examples on the Web

In mid-December, officials were counting on growth slowing to around 2.3% this year from 3% last year to prevent that overheating. Eric Morath, WSJ, "Fed Faces a Fresh Test: Engineering a Soft Economic Landing," 6 Jan. 2019 Basically, if you're overheated, a cool shower will help your body get back to baseline. Alexa Tucker, SELF, "10 Things to Do Before and After a Workout to Get Better Results," 3 Jan. 2019 The Fed has a tough balance to strike — raise interest rates enough to keep the economy from overheating, but avoid overdoing it so as to surprise markets or cause a recession. Emily Stewart, Vox, "Trump’s beef with the Fed, explained," 29 Nov. 2018 Some of the recount trouble centers on the Democratic stronghold of Palm Beach County, where tallying machines have overheated. Kelli Kennedy, The Seattle Times, "Overheating machines complicate Florida’s recount battle," 14 Nov. 2018 This sort of sudden exercise lends itself to injury and overheating. Shelby Deering, Country Living, "Ask a Country Vet: How Can I Keep My Sporting Dog Healthy and Happy?," 11 Sep. 2018 Dickson says the current mat's overheating issues are preventing that silicon from functioning properly. Jeff Dunn, Ars Technica, "Reports: Apple AirPower still overheating, may be “doomed to failure”," 17 Sep. 2018 The fight with Trump has given Erdoğan a useful scapegoat for Turkey’s economic troubles, though the root causes of the volatility — increased inflation and an overheating borrow-and-spend economy — have little to do with Trump. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Shots fired at the US Embassy in Turkey," 20 Aug. 2018 The batteries were found to be prone to overheating; the planes were returned to service after Boeing designed a new system to encase the batteries to better contain fire and smoke. Barbara Peterson, Condé Nast Traveler, "How Often Do New Airplanes Have Problems?," 2 Nov. 2018

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

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First Known Use of overheat

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Statistics for overheat

Last Updated

18 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for overheat

The first known use of overheat was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for overheat



English Language Learners Definition of overheat

: to become too hot

: to cause (something) to become too hot


over·​heat | \ ˌō-vər-ˈhēt \
overheated; overheating

Kids Definition of overheat

: to heat too much : become too hot The engine overheated.

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More from Merriam-Webster on overheat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with overheat

Spanish Central: Translation of overheat

Nglish: Translation of overheat for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of overheat for Arabic Speakers

Comments on overheat

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


tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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