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Dryer VS. Drier: All You Have To Know

by subhasree nag

Well, this is not the first time we are talking about homophones. We had discussed homophones before when we talked about “flier vs. flyer,” “laying vs. lying,” and “bare with me or bear with me.” In case you have not read those articles before, here is a recap about homophones. Homophones are words that sound a lot alike, but their spelling and meaning are different.

Another pair of words that are considered homophones are dryer and drier. There are plenty of words that sound similar, but today we are going to discuss dryer vs drier. While we are using the terms in our conversation, it would be difficult to understand if the context is not clear. Context is the distinguishing factor in a conversation.

Dryer vs drier: the difference  

Previously, these two words were used interchangeably, but now the spellings have diverged from one another. Now these two words have completely different meanings and are used in different contexts.

The comparative form of the adjective dry is drier. Like,

  • The climate of a desert is much drier than a rainforest.
  • The weather here is much drier than the western part.

A dryer is a noun that is used to describe a machine that is capable of removing water from hair or clothes.

  • Blow dry your hair with the dryer before you catch a cold.
  • Don’t forget to put the clothes in the dryer, I would like to wear one of those to work tomorrow.

But it is best if you understand the context to get to the meaning of the word.

There was a time when both words could be used interchangeably, but the distinction came in the 20th century, and now they have separate meanings and are used in absolutely different contexts.

When and how to use the word drier?  

Dryer vs drier_ the difference

The word drier is a comparative adjective that is used to describe something that is more dry than it was before. If you are talking about the weather, this is the word that you should be using. Let’s see a few examples:

  • The soil seems a little drier than yesterday; this is going to be a problem if it doesn’t start raining soon.
  • The weather here is drier here than in her hometown; the change in weather is an experiment that we are doing to see if that improves her condition.
  • I would much prefer drier weather than this humidity; this is getting really irritating now; I am not used to this kind of temperature.
  • The soil is getting drier, but we have to wait a while before we can plant the seeds.
  • It is better that you bright her here; the weather is drier in this part of the country, and it would help me to treat her condition better.
  • This chicken piece is drier than the other one.
  • The weather in Arizona is turning out to be drier this winter.

When and how to use the word dryer?  

This is the word that should be used when you are trying to mention a device or a machine that can be used to remove moisture from something. Let’s check a few examples to get the concept of dryer vs drier more clear.

  • Be careful while you are standing with the dryer by the bathroom. Make sure it does not fall into the water.
  • I doubt that he has put the clothes in the dryer.
  • They are suing the dryer company, as they have found manufacturing defects in the device, and two of their clients have ad pretty serious shocks.
  • This dryer has got many features, as well as different modes, that you can change and adjust to your convenience.
  • The washing machine broke, but I am glad that the dryer is still working.
  • I left my clothes in the dryer for an hour.
  • My hair dryer broke this morning, I have to get ready without drying my hair.

Let’s check out a few outside examples  

  • “The [relative] humidities right now along the coast are much drier than what you’d normally see in the interior desert in the summertime,” Swain said. –LA Times
  • A 15% discount on a $1,000 washer-and-dryer set means a $150 refund. –USA Today
  • During the seven-day trial, Bourmeche recounted being forced into an industrial clothes dryer by his drill instructor. –New York Daily News
  • During the seven-day trial, Bourmeche recounted being forced into an industrial clothes dryer by his drill instructor. –New York Daily News
  • As Sherrod sat under the hair drier, a customer came and hugged her and asked for an autograph. [Atlanta Journal-Constitution].
  • Another sign of winter in the Fredericksburg region is much dryer air, as represented by the dew point readings. [Fredericksburg.com]

Wrapping up!  

The debate between dryer vs drier might be a little confusing, but they are entirely different parts of speech. The word drier is used as an adjective, while the word dryer is a noun. Just remember drier is used to describe something that has gotten drier, and dryer is used when you want to describe a machine or a tool. It is as simple as that.

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