oil the wheels

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oil the wheels

To facilitate, expedite, ease, or aid something or some process; to make or help things run more smoothly or more easily. Primarily heard in UK. Hopefully this shift in public opinion will help oil the wheels of immigration reform. The clients have been reluctant to sign on for another year, so we're offering a cash incentive to help oil the wheels.
See also: oil, wheel
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

oil the wheels


grease the wheels

If someone or something oils the wheels or greases the wheels of a process or system, they help things to happen successfully and without problems. The Bank of Amsterdam, a government bank owned by the city, had been established specifically to help oil the wheels of commerce. This effectively oils the wheels of diplomacy. Credit cards greased the wheels of the consumer boom by allowing us to buy what we want, when we want.
See also: oil, wheel
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

oil the ˈwheels

(British English) (American English grease the ˈwheels) help something to happen easily and without problems, especially in business or politics: He doesn’t worry about bureaucratic procedures because he knows just where to oil the wheels.
See also: oil, wheel
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
A SECOND economic slump could be the result if the Bank of England stops oiling the wheels of recovery.
OILING THE WHEELS: Huddersfield University vice-chancellor prof Bob Cryan (second right) welcomes (from left) Clare Thompson, Joe Mongrain and John Watson, of US oil company Cameron
In other words - those of Howard Wheeldon of BGC Partners to be exact - will consumers be confident enough in the coming months to buy big ticket items such as cars without government oiling the wheels? His fear, expressed elsewhere on this page, is that they won't.
He was als crucial when it came to oiling the wheels of the IRA's war machine, conservatively estimated at pounds 10 million annually.
Charlie Lister seems to be oiling the wheels ready for another good year and he should be among the winners at Swaffham courtesy of Young Messenger and newcomer Pretty Pleasing, but I will take his Ballyard Recruit and Champ Of Clare on with Take A Risk and Newlawn Brook respectively.
Trouble is, drink is so pleasant - oiling the wheels of companionship, banishing our troubles and turning everyone into the cleverest, most confident and best-looking person on the planet.