re·li·abil·i·ty | \ ri-ˌlī-ə-ˈbi-lə-tē \

Definition of reliability 

1 : the quality or state of being reliable

2 : the extent to which an experiment, test, or measuring procedure yields the same results on repeated trials

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Examples of reliability in a Sentence

we never had reason to question the reliability of the park rangers in the event of an emergency

Recent Examples on the Web

In evaluating prospective nominees, Mr. Trump has been working off a list of 25 candidates that was vetted by leaders of the conservative Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation for ideological reliability. Peter Nicholas, WSJ, "Trump Has Finalists for Supreme Court Pick," 5 July 2018 Replacing Michael Crabtree with Jordy Nelson helps with emotional reliability, but if Gruden doesn’t deliberately call plays that get Nelson open through design, the 33-year-old longtime Packer will struggle. Andy Benoit,, "Jon Gruden Is Back, With a Big Rebuilding Job: 10 Thoughts on the Raiders," 18 June 2018 The removal comes after years of criticism around how Facebook picked stories to sit in the Trending box, not to mention more than a year of struggles with the reliability of any news being distributed through its platform. Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge, "Facebook will remove the Trending topics section next week," 1 June 2018 But several independent experts have shown that the growing share of renewables is compatible with increased reliability. Basav Sen, Fortune, "Trump Thinks Propping Up Failing Coal Is a ‘National Security’ Emergency," 31 May 2018 Researchers won’t be able to determine with any reliability the ground track — the path along which debris could fall — until roughly a day or two before the satellite falls, Ailor said. Denise Chow /, NBC News, "A space station is falling to Earth. Here's where it could land.," 17 Jan. 2018 Especially for temperatures that were observed many decades ago, the reliability of the measuring equipment and observing methods often comes into question. Jason Samenow, Washington Post, "Two more countries may have set all-time high temperatures this week: Taiwan and United Arab Emirates," 11 July 2018 Concerns about Trump and the reliability of the U.S. security umbrella have spurred a series of discussions among European leaders about how to respond. Michael Birnbaum,, "Ahead of summit, allies wonder: Will NATO survive Trump?," 9 July 2018 That might be justifiable if these facilities increased the reliability of the grid. Don Santa, Houston Chronicle, "Commentary: Administration’s action on coal, nuclear solves a problem that doesn’t exist," 5 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'reliability.' 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 reliability

1810, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

27 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for reliability

The first known use of reliability was in 1810

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More Definitions for reliability


re·li·abil·i·ty | \ ri-ˌlī-ə-ˈbi-lə-tē \

Kids Definition of reliability

: the quality or state of being fit to be trusted or relied on a car's reliability


re·li·abil·i·ty | \ ri-ˌlī-ə-ˈbil-ət-ē \
plural reliabilities

Medical Definition of reliability 

: the extent to which an experiment, test, or measuring procedure yields the same results on repeated trials

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Comments on reliability

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