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

Also, readers are able to make judgments about the reliability of those whose identities are provided. WSJ, "About the Newsroom," 9 Oct. 2018 For the same reason, this doesn't tell us much about the reliability of high-profile, prestigious journals, either. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Social science has a complicated, infinitely tricky replication crisis," 28 Aug. 2018 Any concerns about the reliability of these drives should also be allayed by the three-year warranty promised by Samsung. Vlad Savov, The Verge, "Mass production of 4TB QLC SSDs begins," 7 Aug. 2018 The defense did not challenge Creigh's truthfulness, but raised concerns about the reliability of his memory of what happened in 1976. Houston Chronicle, "Australian archbishop convicted of child sex abuse cover-up," 22 May 2018 The settlement also noted concerns about the reliability of a tool used previously for inspecting Line 2, which runs from Edmonton, Alberta, to Superior, Wisconsin. Washington Post, "Enbridge fined $1.8M for missing pipe inspection deadlines," 5 May 2018 For now, everyone inside and out who cares about the reliability of law enforcement in America is left hoping that the bureau has at least started on the road back. Eric Lichtblau, Time, "The FBI Is in Crisis. It's Worse Than You Think," 3 May 2018 Rolls-Royce’s struggles to resolve the durability issues also raises questions about the reliability of the Trent engine models used for Airbus SE wide-body jets, said aerospace analyst Richard Aboulafia., "Dreamliners’ Longest Trips Face Curbs Because of Rolls-Royce Engine Issues," 15 Apr. 2018 In 2016, a Baltimore Circuit Court judge vacated Syed's conviction and ordered a new trial based on claims that Syed's trial lawyer failed to cross-examine an expert witness about the reliability of cell tower location evidence. Alex Marquardt, CNN, "A court once again orders a new trial for Adnan Syed, the subject of a 'Serial' podcast," 29 Mar. 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

3 Dec 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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living or existing for a long time

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