Definition of shut off (or shut something off) in US English:

shut off (or shut something off)

phrasal verb

  • 1(used especially in relation to water, electricity, or gas) stop (or cause something to stop) flowing.

    ‘he was about to shut off the power’
    • ‘Monday I came home to a letter in my mailbox, advising all residents of my building that unless the water bill is paid in person by November 20th, the water will be shut off.’
    • ‘About half an hour after the original blast, the power had been shut off, knocking out the supply to about 60 town centre premises, including banks and shops.’
    • ‘The room lights have been shut off so that the room is relatively dimly lit.’
    • ‘I heard they bombed the power plant to black out the city, and that the water was shut off.’
    • ‘The first was that there was a fire on a train at Romford and the power had been shut off.’
    • ‘When he was 30 metres away from the scene, the hydrant burst and he rushed to find a stop valve to shut the water off, which he managed to do after about ten minutes.’
    • ‘Well, the good news is, for me, my hot water has not been shut off, I still have my parking privileges so I'm grateful.’
    • ‘A fire in a sprinkler-equipped house is less likely to spread and cause the house to be an entire loss, but keep in mind that once a sprinkler starts spraying, it keeps spraying until the water is shut off.’
    • ‘That's when it was determined - or somehow the electricity was shut off to the concert stage, and police officials announced that the crowd was immediately ordered to disperse.’
    • ‘If a bathtub or shower is leaking, it is necessary to shut the water off at the main water shut-off and call your professional plumber.’
    1. 1.1 Stop (or cause to stop) working.
      ‘the engines shut off automatically’
      • ‘An idle-stop function saves had by shutting the engine off during deceleration and when stopped, and regenerative braking supplies electricity to recharge the battery or to run the vehicle electric-only.’
      • ‘Our trucks have a mechanism that automatically shuts the engine off if it's idling over the limit.’
      • ‘Darrius shut the engine off and leaned on the steering wheel, taking a good look at Prudence.’
      • ‘So you can save fuel by shutting off your engine.’
      • ‘High quality heaters feature a tip-over safety switch, which automatically shuts the heater off if it should get knocked over.’
      • ‘As he shut the engine off, he heard a very loud scream.’
      • ‘Because the intake system of the manifold was running cool air, all Feazell's team had to worry about was the resident heat after the engine was shut off.’
      • ‘The furnace is equipped with a safety feature which automatically shuts it off when it gets too hot.’
      • ‘She pulled into her driveway and shut the engine off.’
      • ‘Then the job is done, and the generator engine is shut off, reluctantly, slowly it cranks down.’
    2. 1.2shut something off Block the entrances and exits of something.
      ‘the six compartments were being shut off from each other’
      • ‘The girl reaches up above her head, pulls down the metal blind that shuts the bar off from the rest of the room and locks it in place with the padlock.’
      • ‘The justly celebrated Rijksmuseum is still undergoing renovations, so most of it is shut off, with just a small collection of Dutch Old Masters available for viewing.’
      • ‘Visitors have noted, with exasperation and frustration, that their gateways can be shut off by illegal street parking.’
      • ‘The new three-storey building is specially designed so parts of it can be shut off for community use in the evenings and weekends.’
      • ‘The exit and most of the room was shut off by a massive pile of metal and concrete.’
      • ‘Firefighters had problems getting to the basement because of the way it had been shut off from the rest of the house.’
      • ‘Both the rear door and two side entrances were shut off from the outside world by neck-high wooden swing-doors.’
      close off, seal off, tape off, fence off, rope off, screen off, curtain off, cordon off, partition off, separate off, isolate, segregate, blockade, quarantine
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