Definition of drain in English:



  • 1Cause the water or other liquid in (something) to run out, leaving it empty, dry, or drier.

    ‘we drained the swimming pool’
    • ‘If the pump cannot be drained completely, store the sprayer where it cannot freeze.’
    • ‘Coulombe treats the infected arm by placing it into a basin of piping hot water to drain the white-yellow pus.’
    • ‘Actually, pools need not be drained in the southern areas of Mid-America, but the water level should be kept constant.’
    • ‘Owing to the increased flow of the water carried by the new drain which drained a larger area, damage was caused to the plaintiff's land.’
    • ‘Going head-to-head against Jack Nicklaus in a major was like trying to drain the Pacific Ocean with a teacup.’
    • ‘The land is sinking because the aquifers are being drained, and it won't work any more.’
    • ‘The feature is undergoing ‘major maintenance’ work which involves the water tanks being completely drained and all parts serviced.’
    • ‘A survey carried out by the council says that much of the land has been mined below the legal limit, and there were no baulks of peat left to prevent the area from being completely drained.’
    • ‘He takes them to a line drawn on the ground (the putative location of the equator) and drains a pan of water on either side of it.’
    • ‘Ultimately, maintenance drained the water tank, squashing that tricky freezing problem, and we took off.’
    • ‘Thousands of them had to be drained of their glandular mucus to make one single purple toga.’
    • ‘The moat was drained of water with only moss growing at the bottom and the outside walls crawling with thorny vines.’
    • ‘They drained the water drum and refilled it afresh, and left with a hearty goodbye and thank you, hugs and a kiss from Sarah.’
    remove the contents of, void, unload, evacuate
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    1. 1.1 Cause or allow (liquid) to run off or out of something.
      ‘fry the pork and drain off any excess fat’
      • ‘The scuppers, or the devices to allow the water to drain off the decks have been opened - they're normally in a closed position.’
      • ‘Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, and then drain the pasta quickly in a colander.’
      • ‘Make sure to drain salsa of excess liquid or it will make your burrito soggy.’
      • ‘Elevator workers drained the fluid into empty soap containers and didn't change the labels.’
      • ‘The ice cubes can then be drained into glasses for drinking water as they melt.’
      • ‘Reserving one ladle of the pasta water, drain the pasta well.’
      • ‘However, both are good for you - just drain off the oil.’
      • ‘While the sausages are cooking, remove the grapes from their stems, rinse them under cool water, drain them, and place them in a bowl.’
      • ‘Press the rhubarb lightly to drain off its juices, allowing them to trickle into the egg-sugar-butter-flour mixture.’
      • ‘A quick fry in a non-stick pan works well, as the skin crisps and you can drain off the excess oils.’
      • ‘Place on paper towel and allow the grease to drain off.’
      • ‘Leave them for a while to allow the dirt to sink to the bottom, then rinse them under cold running water and drain them in a colander.’
      • ‘Lift the soaked floppy gelatine out of the water and give it a shake to drain off the excess liquid.’
      • ‘A section of the Leeds and Liverpool canal will have to be drained in November to allow further work on the construction of Ferncliffe Road bridge.’
      • ‘The special port facilities, which could be drained to allow repairs on ships' hulls, have been closed and the heavy machinery dismantled and moved to Liverpool.’
      • ‘Do not drain off the small amount of liquid remaining in the saucepan.’
      • ‘Marinate for 20 to 30 minutes, then drain off the liquid.’
      • ‘Wash them well in a pan of water, and drain them well in a colander.’
      • ‘To blanch the almonds, cover them with boiling water for a few minutes, refresh them under cold water, drain them and rub the skins off with your finger tips.’
      • ‘Lightly drain off the excess oil and transfer to a lined sheet pan.’
      • ‘Rinse the rice well under cold running water, drain it, and place in an electric rice-cooker.’
      • ‘The curd mat is transferred into a cookerstretcher of his own design, which heats the curd and continues to drain off liquid.’
      • ‘He also recommended that storm water should be drained to the rivers.’
      draw off, extract, withdraw, remove, pump off, siphon off, milk, bleed, tap, void, filter, pour out, pour off, tip, discharge, transfer
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    2. 1.2 Make (land) drier by providing channels for water to flow away in.
      ‘the land was drained and the boggy ground reclaimed’
      • ‘So far from the sea, fish ponds were a vital source of food and they were perfected as boggy land was drained or dammed all over the area.’
      • ‘But their most serious threat today is habitat destruction as swamps are drained and forests cleared.’
      • ‘Many have been found in reclaimed parts of Holland's Zuider Zee, after the land has been drained.’
      • ‘It all began with a swampy piece of land at the top of Liardet St, which was drained and filled to become terra firma.’
      • ‘For centuries bogs have been drained and converted to agricultural land.’
      • ‘The plant, usually a cactus, potato plant or fern, is secured by a felt strap with a base; tubes allow the soil to drain water.’
      • ‘Camber is the vertical curve provided across the road width with a crest at the centre so that the water flows to the edges and is drained off.’
      • ‘But today, most of this flow has been stopped and the wetlands drained to provide land for sugarcane production.’
      • ‘Further, large tracts of its marshy breeding grounds were rendered unsuitable as they were drained and cleared for cultivation.’
      • ‘The reason for this decline is that wet meadows have been drained and converted to arable land or to improved grassland.’
      • ‘There lies the greatest irony of the Fitzes' landscape: They did such a good job of draining the ground, they now have to water during rainless spells.’
      • ‘That's because earlier generations of farmers drained wetlands and cleared the hardwood forests to expand crop acreage.’
      • ‘Wetlands were being drained so the land could be developed, estuaries were being reclaimed and forests were being cut down.’
      • ‘When the tide rose, the gates could be opened to admit water into the ditches; when the tide fell, the land could be drained.’
      • ‘The reference above to root rot is cautionary only, since this disease would not be problem if badly drained soils and water logged conditions are avoided.’
      • ‘In this game, the players strive to drain water from their lands by skillful placement of stones, representing water channels.’
      • ‘New equipment would be needed on the site if a new park is to be built and the land would have to be drained at extra cost.’
      • ‘Sixteen years after Dunsey steals the money, Godfrey drains the Stone-pits for land and Dunsey's skeleton is found.’
      • ‘Steven explains how the land has been slowly drained, reclaimed, and industrialised.’
      • ‘You can also see gullies and huge channels of water draining from the city and then running back into the sea.’
      • ‘Farmers' savings were sucked away into repairing buildings, clearing woods, draining marshes, and buying animals.’
    3. 1.3 (of a river) carry off the superfluous water from (a district)
      ‘the stream drains a wide moorland above the waterfall’
      • ‘The central parts are drained by the rivers Test and Itchen, the western by the Avon, and the eastern by the Hamble and the Meon.’
      • ‘In the north-east is agricultural land on chalk or limestone well drained by rivers.’
      • ‘North of the mountain range is the Oti plateau, a savanna land drained by the river of the same name.’
      • ‘The milk had to be obtained from cows fed within an exact specified area, which included land drained by the rivers Swale, Yore, and Cover.’
      • ‘The reason that the land was so waterlogged is because the weir systems keep the Thames level artificially high, thereby affecting all the land that should be drained down.’
      • ‘There is a proposed diversion of the river draining Lake Koroko in the Fiordland National Park, and diverting a discharge of Lake Wakatipu down into Southland.’
      • ‘The river draining the proglacial lake carries a much lower amount of sediment than the iceberg and glacial meltwater plumes.’
      • ‘Cascade Creek drains the urban and industrial western side of the city of Erie.’
      • ‘Sheer granite peaks and deep cirques are drained by clear, cold streams.’
      • ‘These dolines are the equivalent of small valleys in a fluvial system, the waters from them uniting underground into the major stream draining the area.’
      • ‘Two rivers drain from the central ridge of Johannesburg - the Klip River in the south, and the Jukskei River in the north.’
      • ‘Its charter granted monopoly rights to trade in lands whose waters drained into Hudson Bay.’
      • ‘The Axamilpa river drains this area and along its banks a sequence of Late Cenozoic sands, silts, and gravels are exposed.’
      • ‘Today, the Severn and its tributaries drain these Vales through the Bristol Channel.’
      • ‘Next on his hit list is Tibet's Indus, the only one of the four major rivers draining 22,028-foot Mount Kailas that he has yet to attempt.’
      • ‘The lake has two small rivers, which drain wetland areas into the southern and northern parts of the lake.’
      • ‘Brazil is probably best known as the land of the Amazon, the world's largest river in area drained and volume of water and second only to the Nile in length.’
      • ‘Bounded on the north by the Ritter Range, the San Joaquin River drains a vast expanse of mountains south of Yosemite.’
      • ‘As well as streams of south-west England and mainland Europe, the young salmon belong to rivers and glens that drain the western Highlands.’
      • ‘The Daly is a large tidal river that drains a vast area of the Northern Territory westward into Anson Bay and the Timor Sea beyond.’
    4. 1.4[no object] (of water or another liquid) flow away from, out of, or into something.
      ‘the river drains into the Pacific’
      figurative ‘Polly felt the blood drain from her face’
      • ‘Everyone who lives in the watershed is just a few minutes from one of the more than 100,000 streams and rivers draining into the bay.’
      • ‘We came into work one morning, and found that the tank had sprung a leak during the night and all the water had drained out.’
      • ‘Properties in Beech Grange have suffered problems as a result of blocked sewage pipes, while others have had trouble with surface water not draining away.’
      • ‘It bled more, the red droplets draining into the water below me.’
      • ‘Perhaps a hundred yards into the trees a wide, shallow creek drained from some unknown point in the forest into the lake.’
      • ‘After the flood this water drained back into said underground chambers.’
      • ‘Of course, if a garbage disposal is not installed, the dishwasher water drains from the air gap into the drain, above the trap.’
      • ‘His engineer squadron is currently installing drainage so that wet season flood waters drain away, reducing the risk of mosquito borne disease.’
      • ‘Because of their position the water drains away and they have to be watered through the summer.’
      • ‘Once it flows in, the water will not drain from New Orleans because of the very levees that protect the city and that largely held during the hurricane.’
      • ‘As most of the land in these states drains eastwards, they were assigned to the eastern subregion in Table 1.’
      • ‘Not very large, just enough to hold the water that drained from the local land.’
      • ‘The landscaping is expected to include drainage panels in it so surface water will drain away into the river.’
      • ‘Here it was colder than Donner Summit, as the colder air from the Truckee River and Prosser Creek drained to the lowest point.’
      • ‘Local surface water drains into a number of rivers, according to Mr. Wood, with a drainage network flowing into rivers such as the Boyne and the Barrow.’
      • ‘The two species of this family are found at high latitudes in the arctic seas and in most of the major rivers draining into them, south to the Saint Lawrence River.’
      • ‘A flight of steps adjacent to the leisure building do not allow rain water to drain off the treads.’
      • ‘The rivers ultimately drain into the Joseph Boneparte Gulf, a region that supports a large commercial prawn fishing industry.’
      • ‘The curds are pushed into two banks, cut into slabs to allow more of the whey to drain off, flipped and stacked three times into ever taller piles.’
      • ‘Thus with the water drained from the land, the subsequent volcanic activity in the Mesozoic and Cainozoic would be sub-aerial.’
      flow, pour, escape, leak, trickle, empty, well, ooze, seep, exude, drip, dribble, issue, filter, percolate, bleed, sweat, leach
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    5. 1.5[no object] Become dry or drier as liquid runs off or away.
      ‘dishes left to drain’
      ‘the plant should be watered well and allowed to drain’
      • ‘But the program, which included such dishes as drained tuna on dry toast, was the worst.’
      • ‘Remove from oil with a slotted metal spoon and allow to drain on a paper towel.’
      • ‘Remove from oil with tongs and allow to drain on a paper towel.’
      • ‘The slides were removed from the Coplin jars and carefully drained of any remaining liquid.’
      • ‘Each tube was inverted and drained on clean, absorbent paper, then allowed to air dry for 10 to 15 minutes.’
      • ‘You don't need to wrap the tofu in layers of paper towels or tilt the plate to let it drain into the sink; the liquid that is pressed out won't go back in.’
      • ‘He says the ditch in Holland Road which runs beside his land is not draining because it is used as a dumping ground for rubbish.’
      • ‘What we need is integrated catchment planning that deals with the management of the whole river, its associated aquifers and wetlands, and the land that drains into it.’
    6. 1.6 (of a person) drink the entire contents of (a glass or other container)
      ‘he seized the Scotch set before him and drained it’
      • ‘He asked, taking a large bite out of a cookie and then draining down half the glass of milk.’
      • ‘Turning a brilliant shade of scarlet, I quickly jerked free and hurriedly went back to the table, draining my glass of water.’
      • ‘They stood nervously at attention while Miri drained the entire glass.’
      • ‘She yanked her fridge open and drained the jug of water… the juice was so salty, it actually stung.’
      • ‘Sam took a sip from his nearly drained water glass and sighed.’
      • ‘Cal drained yet another glass of whiskey as he re-read the note.’
      • ‘Finally the last of the deserts were finished, and the last glass of brandy drained.’
      • ‘Pulling out the stopper, she poured the thick contents into a goblet and drank deep, almost draining the glass.’
      • ‘I picked up my glass again and drained more of it in an effort to get rid of more of my headache.’
      • ‘Instead of answering him, WooJin took the cup and drained half its contents.’
      • ‘Tobias drained off his last glass quickly and stood up.’
      • ‘I run to get new bottles of beer at Dad's command and struggle with my sister over the empties, because I like to drain them on my way to the fridge.’
      • ‘Nora patted the corner of her mouth slightly with a napkin as she watched him drain the glass of water without hesitation.’
      • ‘Every drinker with functioning taste buds who has had the good fortune to sup a pint of this beer has one thought when placing drained glass upon soggy beer mat.’
      • ‘Once again back in his room he corked open the bottle before draining a long bitter drink.’
      • ‘He handed me one and I took it thankfully, draining the entire bowl in a few long gulps.’
      • ‘Mike nodded, drained half the glass, and sat it on the bar.’
      • ‘She watched the new girl silently, seeing how much of the drink was being drained.’
      • ‘She sat back with her water and drained it in a few drinks.’
      • ‘Lifting the glass again, he drained out the remaining contents, his eyes closing as he savored the last drops on the alcohol.’
      drink, drink down, drink up, guzzle, quaff, down, imbibe, sup, slurp, suck, sip, swallow, finish off, polish off
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    7. 1.7[no object] (of a feeling or emotion) become progressively less strongly felt.
      ‘gradually the tension and stress drained away’
      • ‘Finally, I felt all the frustration and annoyance draining out of me.’
      • ‘Unable to find enough energy to hit a ball his confidence drained away and, with no income, he took a job folding clothes and stacking shelves for a living.’
      • ‘For a little while, all the colour and happiness drained away from our lives.’
      • ‘Ian continued loading the truck, but his earlier enthusiasm had drained away.’
      • ‘He once again made all the running on the restart but their confidence visibly drained away as they failed to breach the rock solid defence.’
      • ‘The feelings were slowly draining from her face, leaving it shockingly pale color.’
      • ‘Her fear slowly drained away as she kept his impenetrable onyx gaze questioningly with her own.’
      • ‘All my earlier anger had drained away, and I just wanted to hug her again.’
      • ‘In the past she has admitted she found working on the BBC1 soap extremely stressful and her more traumatic storylines had left her feeling emotionally drained.’
      • ‘Silly little first kisses were fine for people who hadn't truly found love, but that feeling drained away.’
      • ‘he asked with soft wonder, all his anger, pain and frustration magically drained away.’
      • ‘And yet one would hate to see all the emotion drained from what is one of the most important days in the life of any teenager.’
      • ‘My slight feeling of content drained away, and my heart filled with despair.’
      • ‘I would be worried but all emotion seems to have drained away.’
      • ‘She flopped down on her bed, her emotions all drained out from her.’
      • ‘As Donnan looked at the gibbering madman in the crystal ball, his anger drained away.’
      • ‘Slowly, my anger drained away, along with, it seemed, the blood from my face.’
      • ‘His confidence drained away and he became more temperamental and increasingly isolated.’
      • ‘But when I saw him beaming on TV, arms raised in triumph, some of my enthusiasm drained away.’
      • ‘Her rage drained away and she was just a little girl inside once more.’
  • 2Deprive of strength or vitality.

    ‘his limbs were drained of all energy’
    ‘Ruth slumped down in her seat, drained by all that had happened’
    • ‘It seemed that as soon as I stepped foot inside I was drained of energy.’
    • ‘He also suffers from stomach pains and has been drained of energy.’
    • ‘He debated with himself until he had been drained of his burst of courage.’
    • ‘Through the most unlikely chain of events Mr Bloop had beaten all the odds, however he was obviously drained of all his energy and unable even to float upright in his tank at this point.’
    • ‘He haunted her mind and terrorized her dreams, weakening her and draining her of her strength.’
    • ‘A number of calls went inexplicably against Joe and it was clear that they drained his confidence as the game wore on.’
    • ‘Joshua was drained of power, having used all to take down that beast; Joshua had nothing left to save himself with.’
    • ‘His is the bitterness of a man who once knew trust and goodwill, who has been drained of it all in an instant.’
    • ‘In some ways it's been draining, or at least the changes have left me feeling drained.’
    • ‘They have been drained of meaning by their lazy overuse, dangerously sharp and potent concepts reduced to kitsch cliché.’
    • ‘After all the hullabaloo of the holidays and trying to get everything ready in time I'm left feeling drained with a profound sense of anti-climax.’
    • ‘Some people live in clutter, thrive on noise, and allow themselves to be drained by demanding friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘Anyone who would be president of Egypt will have to work until he is drained of energy.’
    • ‘I asked if it was getting annoying, being drained of energy when there's so much to do, but she said she didn't have the energy to get annoyed.’
    • ‘I was acting tired and weak, as Edward had to think I was still being drained of my power.’
    • ‘I've been totally drained of energy, and this morning, for instance, I found it nigh on impossible to get myself out of bed.’
    • ‘She looked like she was being drained of power, of will, of purpose.’
    • ‘If we lose the vigor and intensity of our youth, or from overwork, we become drained, exhausted, burned out, longing for the vigor of old.’
    • ‘All the fight had gone out of him and he was drained of all energy.’
    • ‘I was drained of all my energy and I needed to be in a place where I could rest and finish High School and get help/support with my baby.’
    • ‘I left feeling utterly drained and very moved; it's rare for performance art to affect me so viscerally.’
    1. 2.1 Cause (money, energy, or another valuable resource) to be lost, wasted, or used up.
      ‘my mother's hospital bills are draining my income’
      • ‘The lack of rain and the increase in water usage is literally draining water supplies from the region's reservoirs.’
      • ‘The cost of building a new hospital and local care centres could drain the NHS of resources for patient care in the future, says the MP.’
      • ‘They fear already stretched NHS resources will be further drained as the number of sick elderly people continues to grow.’
      • ‘And because our treasury is being drained of hundreds of billions of dollars desperately needed at home.’
      • ‘Because people are getting wealthier, they are retiring earlier and this is draining an already shallow pool of available human resources.’
      • ‘These empty calories will only increase your risk of obesity and drain your body of much-needed nutrients.’
      • ‘Our fast-growing population is draining the water supply in many parts of the country.’
      • ‘A long climb inexorably drains your body of glycogen and liquid.’
      • ‘Resources are being drained and costs are soaring (from line charges as well as hardware costs).’
      • ‘He had been drained of a huge amount of authority.’
      • ‘One of the implications is that activity in the private sector could be draining resources from the public hospitals for no known benefit.’
      • ‘Therefore, it is not in the national interest to allow people to gather in these threatened cities and drain the few precious resources we have left.’
      • ‘Missed doctors and hospital appointments in York, Selby and Easingwold are draining the NHS of £1.4 million a year.’
      • ‘In this way the agriculture is being constantly drained and the resources go to the hands of the traders.’
      • ‘But NHS officials insist that developing countries are not being drained of nurses.’
      • ‘This way of meeting health needs does not create a bottomless pit into which we are forced to drain all available social resources.’
      • ‘All the while, his huge spiritual resources are being drained.’
      • ‘They chose not to turn to a parallel private system, on the grounds that it would drain valuable resources away from the public system.’
      • ‘Maxing the screen brightness and running Windows Media Player continuously drains the battery in almost three hours.’
      • ‘His entire being had been drained by the immense blast he'd unleashed on the assaulting legions, but Rakael's desperate cry for help had catapulted him out of his repose.’
      • ‘Foundation hospitals offering bonuses and higher pay could drain the NHS of desperately needed workers, making dire staffing shortages worse.’
      use up, exhaust, deplete, consume, expend, swallow up, absorb, get through, go through, run through, take up, occupy, empty, sap, strain, tax, bleed
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    2. 2.2[no object] (of a resource) be lost, wasted, or used up.
      ‘votes and campaign funds drained away from the Republican candidate’
      • ‘The campaign season has been draining and I'm looking forward to getting on with life and moving on.’
      • ‘And I've had my funds drained on past tours traveling in a car or a van that needed endless repairs.’
      • ‘This confusion could have drained away cognitive resources needed to process story information.’
      • ‘But political pressure on US regulators to clean up Wall Street is mounting as the public watch pension funds drain away.’
      • ‘Weekly, at least £12,000 is draining from county funds.’
      • ‘But, with resources draining away and the lease on the building set to expire in June, the board of trustees decided to make the youth workers redundant and close the club down in March.’
      • ‘A small network can see its resources drained considerably by an infestation of bots.’
      • ‘Desperately needed resources are draining out of the world's poorest countries in debt repayments to rich creditors.’
      squander, misspend, waste, throw away, make poor use of, be prodigal with
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  • 3Golf
    informal (of a player) hole (a putt)

    • ‘The simple task of sealing the hole inexplicably drained him of energy and he leaned back against the rock wall of the cave and sighed wearily.’
    • ‘Watson played golf from the heavens on the Sunday in Turnberry, holing a chip for eagle on 10 and draining putts from 20, 30 and 40 ft.’
    • ‘His chip floats in to about 12 feet for three and he drains his birdie putt.’
    • ‘The composure with which he drained the winning putt in the Walker Cup five years ago was the mark of a man who responds well to pressure.’
    • ‘He putted superbly, draining a 30-footer on the 14th and a tricky downhill five footer on the 16th.’
    • ‘How about the percentage of putts golfers drain from eight feet or their ability to pinpoint shots with their pitching wedges?’
    • ‘Plodding up the 18th, needing just a par to make the cut, he was big with his approach, chipped back and could not drain the putt from eight feet.’
    • ‘She closed with birdies at two par-fives, on the sixth and ninth, and drained a nine-foot putt at the par-four eighth.’
    • ‘He had a little wobble in his third round but drained some tremendous putts to keep his momentum going.’
    • ‘But they did not have things all their own way as the Greek players drained a succession of three-pointers to keep the contest close in the second half.’
    • ‘At the next, he drained a 40-foot curling putt to go one over par, and raised his arms to the heavens, a la Faldo.’
    • ‘Almost inevitably, he then sought out the flag at the par-three second, drained his birdie putt, and picked up three more shots in an outward half of 32.’
    • ‘A dramatic charge took its first leap forward at the par - 5 fourth, where he found the green in two and drained an eagle putt from 18 feet.’


  • 1A channel or pipe carrying off surplus liquid, especially rainwater or liquid waste.

    • ‘Rat-tailed maggot larvae may be found in drains, waste waters, liquid manure, slurry tanks or ditches.’
    • ‘At a hardware store, I laid the fittings out on the floor of the plumbing aisle and began to design our drain, waste and vent systems.’
    • ‘They were primitive small cylinders, not hooked up to water pipes or drains, with no spin dryers or wringers.’
    • ‘Close the water valves and disconnect the water lines just above the valves and the drain piping at the trap.’
    • ‘It was no longer possible to flush out waste down the drains.’
    • ‘But now we can't even use the plumbing because the drains are all backed up.’
    • ‘Gas had built up and seeped through pipes, drains and cable ducts into the bungalows.’
    • ‘The poor state of storm water drains in the city became evident after the first spells of heavy rain last month.’
    • ‘The system must also provide for waste flow to drains.’
    • ‘When sewage builds up too quickly it can block the system's outlet pipe and clog the drain, causing a backup.’
    • ‘The room's toilet pipes and shower drains carry this waste to a holding tank.’
    • ‘An effort is also on to kick off work to cover open storm water drains like the one in Jeevan Bhima Nagar - where a youth was drowned earlier this year.’
    • ‘It is good that the BMP has started work on removing silt from storm water drains before the onset of monsoon.’
    • ‘He says he has campaigned for better drains along the busy route for more than 14 years.’
    • ‘Clogged drains and pipes problems will prevent the bathtub from drying and may indicate serious problems beneath the bathtub.’
    • ‘First try the liquid drain products that are compatible with your home plumbing system first.’
    • ‘This allows there to be fewer drains and narrower down pipes.’
    • ‘Plugged and or restricted drain lines need to be snaked out using a plumber drain cleaning snake.’
    • ‘Look around the sink, slow draining pipes indicate a blocked drain.’
    • ‘This may indicate that roof leakage is occurring where the drain vent pipe penetrates the roof flashing.’
    sewer, channel, conduit, ditch, culvert, duct, pipe, tube, gutter, groove, furrow, trough, trench, cut, sluice, spillway, race, flume, chute
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    1. 1.1 A tube for drawing off accumulating fluid from a body cavity or an abscess.
      • ‘The surgeon places a closed-suction drain tube, which remains in place at least two days postoperatively.’
      • ‘Skin protection is the common denominator linking the management of tubes, drains, fistulae, and draining wounds.’
      • ‘The PACU nurse monitors the compression-bulb drain from the abdominal cavity for the type and quantity of output.’
      • ‘Her lumbar drain and indwelling Foley catheter was removed the morning after surgery, and she ambulated in the hall later that morning.’
      • ‘They experimented by omitting the use of dressings and, instead inserted drains using bactericidal fluids.’
      • ‘The subcutaneous drain is removed within the first few days or when the output is less than 50 cc's per day.’
      • ‘It may also present with signs of sepsis, or increased drainage output from previously placed chest tubes and drains.’
      • ‘All patients have a number of drains, plastic tubes left under the skin and fat to collect tissue fluid and blood, left in place for one to two weeks.’
      • ‘The surgeon removes the drain 24 hours after surgery if no increases in intracranial pressure are noted.’
      • ‘The wound is closed in layers over a drain placed in the subcutaneous space.’
      • ‘Tubes, sutures and drains cover his body from nose to abdomen.’
      • ‘The first lymph node into which fluids from a tumor drain is called the sentinel node.’
      • ‘You may also be given a drain, to remove any blood and fluid that accumulates around the wound.’
      • ‘The doctors therefore simply inserted two abdominal drains under local anaesthetic, and about 50 ml of fluid drained from each.’
      • ‘Tubes called drains may be used to remove any build-ups of blood in an area of the body until healing occurs.’
      • ‘At completion of the procedure a single chest tube drain is placed.’
      • ‘Two drains were placed in the largest abscesses in the right and left lobes under ultrasound guidance.’
      • ‘Note drain and second abscess in segments VII and VIII’
      • ‘Little has been reported on the painfulness of the removal of (non-chest tube) wound drains.’
      • ‘A tube or strip of rubber called a drain may be left in the abscess to stop it from healing over.’
    2. 1.2Electronics The part of a field-effect transistor to which the charge carriers flow after passing the gate.
      • ‘An insulating layer is formed over a substrate having a source region, a drain region, and a gate electrode.’
      • ‘The source and drain electrodes, the upper electrode, and a signal line respectively have portions formed of a common Mo film.’
      • ‘The sources and drains of the compensating transistors are connected together so that they transistors act as capacitors.’
      • ‘In N-type transistors, negative charges move between the source and drain.’
      • ‘A drain electrode layer is formed by a first passivation film with the first passivation film formed as an upper layer.’
      • ‘A comparator connects to the drain circuitry of the input transistors which supplies and offset voltage to the comparator.’
      • ‘This causes a flow of electrons from the source electrode to the gold island, and from there, they are tunneled towards the drain electrode.’
      • ‘Each electrode is connected to a capacitor, which in turn is connected to the source and drain of a thin-film transistor.’
      • ‘The island nestles between two electrodes, known as the source and drain.’
      • ‘A thin oxide spacer is used to displace P-type dopant implantation to P-type shallow source and drain extension junctions.’
      • ‘Liquid crystal display having drain and pixel electrodes linkable to a wiring line having a potential’
      • ‘Process of fabricating floating gate type field effect transistor having drain region gently varied in impurity profile’
      • ‘The integrated circuit device, in turn, possesses at minimum a source electrode and a drain electrode of the same polarity.’
      • ‘The switch consumes power from the battery, however the current drain, 16 microamperes, is far too low to be of concern.’
      • ‘Thin film transistor array having single light shield layer over transistors and gate and drain lines’
      • ‘A metal layer is deposited over the gate electrode and associated source and drain regions.’
      • ‘A voltage difference applied across the crystal by way of source and drain electrodes then causes current to flow through the charged region.’
      • ‘A second conductive line is formed in a direction crossing the control gate lines at a right angle coupled to the drain regions.’
  • 2[in singular] A thing that uses up a particular resource.

    ‘nuclear power is a serious drain on the public purse’
    • ‘They believe that diagnosis is a neglected problem which allows conditions to deteriorate, placing further drains on NHS resources.’
    • ‘To support this expansion increasing demands were made on economies, adding a further drain on resources.’
    • ‘‘It was very successful but when the problems died down the project became a big drain on resources so we stopped it,’ he said.’
    • ‘Buttons on the camera body let you change most settings without turning on the color display and drilling through menus, a battery drain.’
    • ‘‘Policing of this one premises represents a substantial drain on my resources,’ said the inspector.’
    • ‘If you're looking for the culprit responsible for most of the drain on your batteries, it's that big LCD display on the back of the camera.’
    • ‘Another day he hopes will come is when the network ceases to be a drain on the budget and becomes a revenue producer for the city.’
    • ‘The report, by a Washington research group, said both groups are victims of malnutrition and a drain on national resources.’
    • ‘Ongoing legal battles continue to be an economic drain on the resources of the Mohawk community.’
    • ‘To suggest that, in the recent past, cities were widely perceived otherwise - as a drain on resources - is disingenuous, to say the least.’
    • ‘Demands from the NSW Government for higher dividends are creating a drain on resources within the power entities.’
    • ‘This is expensive, so that neonatal care provides a significant drain on scarce resources.’
    • ‘Conferences are a huge drain on time and resources, taking the best and brightest away from their work implementing the agreement.’
    • ‘The reduction in funding means some families will now have to apply for respite, which will mean an alternative drain on the government resources.’
    • ‘It only gives them one more mouth to feed and one more drain on their meager resources.’
    • ‘Single slot transmission will avoid excessive heating and battery drain, but will limit the speed of, for example, video phone output.’
    • ‘Cellphones and palmtop organisers can now play louder ring tones and MP3 music with less drain on the batteries, thanks to a new way of radiating sound from the screen’
    • ‘In fact, they are a drain on its resources, creating a deficit of over Rs.12 lakhs a year, despite the huge income that tours generate for their promoters.’
    • ‘It is a known fact that road haulage apart from the massive costs involved, is a drain on national resources, as the network regularly needs repair.’
    • ‘It is a major drain on police resources in Swindon, and the newspaper has recently reported problems in Toothill, Freshbrook, Stratton and Highworth.’
    • ‘Too often, what may seem to be another ‘great idea’ can become a distraction or even a drain on resources.’
    strain, demand, pressure, burden, load, imposition, tax
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 The continuous loss or expenditure of a particular resource.
      ‘the drain of our heritage’
      • ‘The introduction of upper division programs will result in new expenditures, which cannot help creating a drain on existing resources.’
      • ‘This drain on financial resources limits the region's ability to continue to grow and create wealth.’
      • ‘Oh sure, the on-campus businesses went about their usual routine, with some making money and the ones that historically are a budget drain continuing to be so.’
      • ‘Dobbs' task will be to stem the viewership drain, and he says he harbors no illusions about the difficulty of the job at hand.’
      • ‘The drain of talent could be heightened even further next year after the chief executive revealed they may be forced to scrap their Academy team.’
      • ‘Police pensions continued to be a drain on the budget and support systems had been stripped back to such an extent that it would be ‘dangerous’ to go further.’
      • ‘Some experts believe the crisis will be particularly severe in Scotland, because the continuing drain of departing youth multiplies the effect of an ageing population.’
      • ‘Now U.S. taxpayers are tired of the drain on local schools, hospitals and other services.’
      • ‘Without that recognition, current problems cannot be addressed, and the drain of musical talent from the church will continue.’
      • ‘Even worse, these utilities are often a continual drain and national budgets, thus the need to go to the IMF or World Bank for bailouts.’
      • ‘A pattern has emerged, and one that highlights a worrying talent drain.’
      • ‘As long as people can pursue their economic interests by going where the opportunity is, that drain will continue.’
      • ‘However, it makes no sense to keep the project alive at the cost of a massive, continuing drain from consumers and public finances.’
      • ‘However, the constant drain of talent can be a vicious circle.’
      • ‘The other significant drain on Garda resources continued to be public order offences, many of which were alcohol-related.’
      • ‘Is it the appalling language, the irregular sleeping patterns, or the continual drain on your bank balance?’
      • ‘They have drafted in a former first team coach to co-ordinate a new youth policy which, they hope, will stop the drain of talent away from the town.’
      • ‘The former controller of BBC Radio Four wants to halt the drain of Caledonian talent dripping away to London in his new role in Scotland.’
      • ‘The report revealed that unless there is a fundamental change in visitor numbers, the Centre will continue to be a drain on the Council purse.’
      • ‘The company has consistently said that funding the continuing trading losses is the biggest drain on its cash flow.’


  • go down the drain

    • informal Be totally wasted.

      ‘the government must stop public money from going down the drain’
      • ‘‘This long project had engineers on the site every day and look at what happened… This is taxpayers' money going down the drain,’ he said.’
      • ‘Right now I feel like my whole life has gone down the drain.’
      • ‘Irrespective of whose money has gone down the drain, bus shelters are needed along the new routes.’
      • ‘The stunned wife laments that the money she earned working under the scorching sun has gone down the drain.’
      • ‘Their sound was drowned in the recording and orchestration by their producer, so that rock-and-roll beat went down the drain.’
      • ‘The career just went down the drain after what was one of my great films.’
      • ‘After the closure the economy of the town went down the drain.’
      • ‘That Minister, more than any other Minister in this House, has been responsible for public money going down the drain.’
      • ‘I feel like committing suicide as month of hard labour and money have gone down the drain.’
      • ‘That is one hundred and fifty dollars of my money gone down the drain.’
      • ‘Public money should not go down the drain in the name of road repairs.’
      • ‘Well when he left, any thoughts I had of speaking to her just went down the drain.’
      • ‘As far as I am concerned €15.5m is gone down the drain and we have no choice now but to follow the money trail,’ he said.’
      • ‘Attempting to save face after his embarrassing climbdown on a proposal he had personally championed, the Taoiseach denied time and money had gone down the drain in the pursuit of his dream.’
      • ‘‘We are paying money and it's going down the drain for things we don't need - like empty buildings,’ said a Pentagon spokesman.’
      • ‘No matter how hard you have worked and saved during your life you will have to watch helplessly as all your money goes down the drain if you need to spend any length of time in a nursing home.’
      • ‘Tottenham's 100 per cent home record went down the drain when they could not beat Manchester City.’
      • ‘‘This sort of work does not come cheap, so I will be finding out precisely how much money has effectively gone down the drain,’ he added.’
      • ‘How much of our council tax money has gone down the drain for the new dustbins?’
      • ‘All our planning and dreams went down the drain in two minutes flat.’


Old English drēahnian, drēhnian strain (liquid) of Germanic origin; related to dry.