I am trying to describe that a certain washer prevents or reduces the possibility of a bolt coming off. In other words, I am trying to describe that the bolt usually stops a bolt from coming off, but may sometimes fail to do so. That is, I don't want to vow that that washer always stops a bolt from coming off. If possible, I don't want to use the conjunction "or". Could you advise me on my examples below:

  1. This washer restrains a bolt from coming off.
  2. This washer makes it unlikely that a bolt comes off.

1 Answer 1


You could say

This washer helps to keep the bolt in place.

There is no guarantee there, and yet the purpose is explained. There is even an implication that the washer is not a perfect solution to the problem.

You could describe exactly what the washer does:

This lock washer reduces the effects of vibration, which can cause the bolt to become loose.

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