[ krangk-uhp ]

  1. an act or instance of cranking up.

Origin of crank-up

First recorded in 1905–10; noun use of verb phrase crank up

Words Nearby crank-up Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use crank-up in a sentence

  • I'm suggesting that you—er—crank up the machine, Mr. Flowers, and beat it while the going's good!

    The Definite Object | Jeffery Farnol
  • Then they would all make a dash, and he would crank up while Billie jumped in and started the car.

    The Motor Maids' School Days | Katherine Stokes
  • I had strength enough left to get out and crank up, then, but none to spare.

    The Car That Went Abroad | Albert Bigelow Paine

British Dictionary definitions for crank up

crank up

verb(tr) slang
  1. to increase (loudness, output, etc): he cranked up his pace

  2. to set in motion or invigorate: news editors have to crank up tired reporters

  1. (intr, adverb) to inject a narcotic drug

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with crank-up


Get started, as in The theater season is cranking up with four benefit performances. This expression transfers the literal sense of crank, “operate a motor by turning a crank,” to starting any activity. [Slang; 1930s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.