What is preferable to use: verb + gerundive or verb + infinitive?

For example:

I tried checking it


I tried to check it

if both are possible then what's the difference? Are there any specific use cases for both gerundive and infinitive in such a construction?

Thank you.


Try + gerund means to experiment with an action that might be a solution to your problem.

If you have problems sleeping, you could try doing some yoga before you go to bed, or you could try drinking some warm milk.

Try + to-infinitive means to make an effort to do something. It may be something very difficult or even impossible:

The surgeons tried to save his life but he died on the operating table.

You can find info on usage of try and other verbs that can take gerund/infinitive in different sources, e.g. here, or here.

  • 2
    @RuslanGerasimov Note, however, that these interpretations are specific to the verb try. Other verbs use gerunds and infinitives differently. – StoneyB on hiatus Aug 7 '14 at 11:23
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    @StoneyB yes, that's clear from your answer, because links you provide shows that. Thanks for that. – Ruslan Gerasimov Aug 7 '14 at 11:24
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    @RuslanGerasimov Not my answer - Vilmar's. And a very good one, too! – StoneyB on hiatus Aug 7 '14 at 11:26
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    @StoneyB correct. – Ruslan Gerasimov Aug 7 '14 at 11:27
  • Is it sleeping problems? or problems sleeping! – Maulik V Aug 7 '14 at 11:56

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