It is essential to thorough clean/to clean thoroughly/to thoroughly clean the machine after each use.

Choose the best option to make the sentence perfect. I am a bit confused here because I believe each one of them makes the sentence proper. I do not think if there is any rule for this. If yes, please let me know. Suggestions please. Thank you.

2 Answers 2


Note the difference:


It is essential to thoroughly clean the machine.


It is essential to to clean thoroughly the machine.

The second example can be correctly constructed like this:

It is essential to to clean the machine thoroughly.

Even so, the first example sounds slightly better to me.


This is a difficult question to answer because it is more a question of style than a question of grammar.

The first option is the worst. "Thorough" is an adjective. It is not a suitable modifier for a verb. One way or another, you should use the adverb "thoroughly". As I judge these options, this is the only one with bad grammar.

The last option is a split infinitive. Old-fashioned style guides recommend (or even demand) that you avoid split infinitives. Personally, I find this to be a good option. I cannot speak for whatever style guide you might be required to follow.

The remaining option avoids the split infinitive, but it poses a different stylistic problem. It places the adverb between the infinitive and its object. I have to recommend that you avoid that. I have no idea whether your style guide considers that to be a problem.

The best option is an option that you don't list. Place the adverb after the infinitive's direct object:

It is essential to clean the machine thoroughly after each use.

However, on a multiple choice test, you cannot choose an option which is not provided.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .