Definition of turn something on in US English:

turn something on

phrasal verb

  • 1Start the flow or operation of something by means of a valve, switch, or button.

    ‘she turned on the TV’
    • ‘I'm going to hit the power button to turn the television on.’
    • ‘Cameras start recording without operators turning them on.’
    • ‘The right button turns the sight on, while the left controls reticle intensity.’
    • ‘Pushing the button to turn the radio on, I wondered what was in the CD player.’
    • ‘Marie looks over at me then pushes the power button to turn the radio on.’
    • ‘You just press a button four times to turn it on and off.’
    • ‘If I turn it on now we will only trip the breakers and shut everything down.’
    • ‘He turned it on, inserted the paper and pressed the start button.’
    • ‘It takes me forever to find the button to turn the television on.’
    • ‘The top button turns the power on and selects menu choices.’
    switch on, put on, power up, flick on
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Adjust a tap or switch in order to start the operation or flow of something.
      ‘I turned the switch on’
      • ‘Even when I turn the switch on, the shade is so heavy and the bulb so dim that the lamp only makes shadows of everything.’
      • ‘He said it's almost as if a light switch has been turned on.’
      • ‘It's entertaining, but it also flip-flops your brain and turns some switches on and off.’
      • ‘I put the carrier bag down and reached to turn the light switch on.’
      • ‘Vincent found the main power switch and turned it on.’
      • ‘Adele turned the faucet on and adjusted the water to a non-scalding temperature.’
      • ‘It is a part of me and I cannot turn a switch on and off.’
      • ‘This white wire will be made hot when the switch is turned on and will take the electrical power to the controlled outlet.’
      • ‘Rick felt along the back wall, and found the switch, turning it on.’
      • ‘Alice's hand finds the light switch and she turns it on.’
      switch on, put on, power up, flick on
      View synonyms