[ verb oh-ver-hawl, oh-ver-hawl; noun oh-ver-hawl ]
See synonyms for overhaul on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to make necessary repairs on; restore to serviceable condition: My car was overhauled by an expert mechanic.

  2. to investigate or examine thoroughly for repair or revision: Next year we're going to overhaul the curriculum.

  1. to gain upon, catch up with, or overtake, as in a race.

  2. to haul or turn over for examination.

  3. Nautical.

    • to slacken (a rope) by hauling in the opposite direction to that in which the rope was drawn taut.

    • to release the blocks of (a tackle).

  1. Also o·ver·haul·ing. a general examination and repair: The state roads were badly in need of a major overhaul.

Origin of overhaul

First recorded in 1620–30; over- + haul

Other words from overhaul

  • o·ver·haul·er, noun
  • un·o·ver·hauled, adjective

Words Nearby overhaul

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use overhaul in a sentence

  • But if a reform party does achieve power, if only for a term, the first thing for it to do is to overhaul the ballot system.

    Ancestors | Gertrude Atherton
  • They knew that we were not many minutes ahead, and trusted to overhaul us before the express train could be safely passed.

  • However, it was quite true that she could overhaul the Spray—only give her time enough, and provided no accident should happen.

    The Rival Campers | Ruel Perley Smith
  • In pretty good spirits she set to work to overhaul our wardrobe, and prepare everything for packing.

    In the Wilds of Florida | W.H.G. Kingston
  • At the pace the pony was going they were able to overhaul the herd in a short time.

    The Pony Rider Boys in Texas | Frank Gee Patchin

British Dictionary definitions for overhaul


verb(ˌəʊvəˈhɔːl) (tr)
  1. to examine carefully for faults, necessary repairs, etc

  2. to make repairs or adjustments to (a car, machine, etc)

  1. to overtake

  1. a thorough examination and repair

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012