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is used for - is used to

PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:04 pm
by LĂ©opold
Dear Prof,

Let's consider the following sentences:

1. A washing machine is used for washing clothes.
2. A washing machine is used to wash clothes.

According to my knowledge, the first sentence with 'used for' is correct. I wonder if 'used to' in the second sentence can also be said.

Thank you.

Re: is used for - is used to

PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:26 pm
by prof
Both of these sentences are correct. If you have the option, it is better to say 'used for' + participle, simply because 'used to' has several different meanings. (e.g. 'That machine used to wash clothes, but now it's broken.')

So when you mean something is employed for a particular purpose, it is less confusing to say 'used for'.