Definition of ventilate in US English:



[with object]
  • 1Cause air to enter and circulate freely in (a room, building, etc.)

    ‘ventilate the greenhouse well’
    as adjective, in combination ‘gas heaters should only ever be used in well-ventilated rooms’
    • ‘The building is entirely naturally ventilated, with fabric, structure and skin tuned to control the internal environment.’
    • ‘Eighty percent of the building is naturally ventilated.’
    • ‘Remember to use any sprays or chemicals in a place that is well ventilated.’
    • ‘Never use any paint stripper in a poorly ventilated area.’
    • ‘When working with contact cement, make sure your work area is well ventilated.’
    • ‘Flammable liquids should be kept in approved metal containers in a well ventilated location.’
    • ‘The control group was maintained in a similar chamber ventilated with filtered air.’
    • ‘As a payment he got my old gas fire, for which my front room is not adequately ventilated.’
    • ‘They also had to smash a number of windows in the chapel to ventilate the building.’
    • ‘The building was evacuated as two teams of two fire fighters entered the building to clear up the spillage and ventilate the factory.’
    • ‘Each room is ventilated separately from the other toilet rooms.’
    • ‘In damp, warm, poorly ventilated areas, surface mold often develops on wooden parts of buildings.’
    • ‘Your average busy bar accommodates a couple of hundred people in an enclosed and poorly ventilated area.’
    • ‘All three office buildings were mechanically ventilated without humidification.’
    • ‘Every part of the living area is properly ventilated, with each room given a huge opening that enhances a sense of spaciousness.’
    • ‘Their laboratory was three mechanically ventilated office buildings.’
    • ‘In conventionally ventilated rooms, bacterial counts were consistently high and were not significantly influenced by OR attire.’
    • ‘In the meantime we are advising schools to ensure rooms are ventilated.’
    • ‘The naturally ventilated buildings are adjacent to several busy streets in a commercial zone.’
    • ‘Once the 800 degrees was reached, the building would be ventilated.’
    aerate, air, oxygenate, air-condition, fan, freshen, refresh, cool
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of air) purify or freshen (something) by blowing on or through it.
      ‘a colossus ventilated by the dawn breeze’
      • ‘Membrane oxygenators consist of a series of fine tubes which allow diffusion of oxygen and carbon dioxide between the blood flowing through them and the ventilating gas surrounding them.’
      • ‘Antibiotic concentrations declined by 70 percent during that period if the sample was ventilated with forced air.’
  • 2Discuss or examine (an opinion, issue, or complaint) in public.

    ‘he used the club to ventilate an ongoing complaint’
    • ‘It is also a remedy in public law for safeguarding public law rights and for ventilating public law issues.’
    • ‘There remains only one matter, your Honour, which we did ventilate on the last occasion.’
    • ‘‘We are aware that the issue has been ventilated by an e-mail campaign,’ his spokeswoman said.’
    • ‘Many of the main allegations have been well ventilated already but that did not take away from their impact.’
    • ‘Because of the brief way it was led and the way it was thus cross-examined, that issue was not ventilated at any length.’
    • ‘A lot of opinion has certainly been ventilated this week on the working practices of the travel industry.’
    • ‘It sounds as if this issue has not really ever yet been fully ventilated and decided in the way in which you have described it to me.’
    • ‘Her erstwhile colleagues in Cabinet report that Ms Short was never timid about ventilating her opinions.’
    • ‘Your Honours, neither of the points my friend has sought to ventilate in this Court were raised before the Court of Criminal Appeal at all.’
    • ‘The question was well and truly ventilated that there was, in fact, a loss and it was up to his Honour to quantify it.’
    • ‘The issue needs to be ventilated, but it takes a lot more than holding a summit.’
    • ‘So that issue and the facts which would underpin that issue were never ventilated in the Tribunal.’
    • ‘Well, in our submission, your Honour, they choose to have this issue ventilated at the highest level.’
    • ‘The matter I was about to raise is that the question of whether the bargain was fair was not ventilated except in this way.’
    • ‘It is not as if the issue had not been ventilated in the evidence, it was that counsel was stopped from addressing on that issue.’
    • ‘And I think there are a couple of issues that really deserve to be fully ventilated.’
    • ‘Over the next few days I plan to really ventilate the issue, to open up for discussion and so on.’
    • ‘By the same token, my friend would be able to ventilate all issues that pertain to the merits of the proposed amendment.’
    • ‘Our submission is that it was just never ventilated, it was never discussed.’
    • ‘I will not read it out, but it is the question which has been ventilated today.’
    express, give expression to, air, give an airing to, bring into the open, raise, register, lodge, bring up, come out with, reveal, assert, declare, communicate, utter, voice, give voice to, put into words, verbalize, talk about, discuss, debate, talk over
    View synonyms
  • 3Medicine
    Subject to artificial respiration.

    • ‘A sterile, second airway is needed in this instance to ventilate the lung.’
    • ‘Initially the lungs had to be ventilated artificially.’
    • ‘Each animal was artificially ventilated, and the mechanical respiratory properties of the mouse were measured.’
    • ‘Animals were ventilated intermittently to peak pressure at a respiratory rate of 20 breaths per minute.’
    • ‘In Brazil, 55 % of patients mechanically ventilated for acute lung injury died.’
    1. 3.1archaic Oxygenate (the blood).


Late Middle English (in the sense ‘winnow, scatter’): from Latin ventilat- ‘blown, winnowed’, from the verb ventilare, from ventus ‘wind’. Sense 1 dates from the mid 18th century.