wrench

(redirected from wrenched)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Encyclopedia.
Related to wrenched: wrenchingly
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!

gut-wrenching

Agonizing; extremely distressing, unpleasant, or emotionally disturbing; having a severe effect on one's feelings. What a gut-wrenching loss for the young athlete, who poured her heart and soul into this match. Kids today are so desensitized that images of violence their grandparents would have found gut-wrenching now barely even register a response.

put a (monkey) wrench in(to) the works

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. Primarily heard in US. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a wrench in the works! It'll really put a monkey wrench into the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: put, work, wrench

monkey wrench

1. A type of wrench that has adjustable jaws. Pass me that monkey wrench, will you? I need to get a hold of this nut here.
2. Something that causes problems or disruptions. Ellen's flight getting delayed really threw a monkey wrench into our plans for the day. This rain has sure put a monkey wrench into our pool party!
See also: monkey, wrench

throw a (monkey) wrench in(to) the works

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a wrench in the works! It'll really throw a monkey wrench into the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: throw, work, wrench

throw a monkey wrench in(to) (something)

To disrupt, foil, or cause problems to a plan, activity, or project. Primarily heard in US. We had everything in line for the party, but having the caterer cancel on us at the last minute really threw a monkey wrench into our plans! It'll really throw a monkey wrench in the works if the board decides not to increase our funding for this project.
See also: monkey, throw, wrench

throw a monkey wrench in the works

Fig. to cause problems for someone's plans. I don't want to throw a monkey wrench in the works, but have you checked your plans with a lawyer? When John suddenly refused to help us, he really threw a monkey wrench in the works.
See also: monkey, throw, work, wrench

wrench something from someone

to grab or twist something out of someone's grasp. The policeman wrenched the gun from Lefty's hand and called for his partner. Max wrenched the wallet from Jed's hand and fled with it.
See also: wrench

wrench something off (of) someone or something

 and wrench something off
to yank or twist something off someone or something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) He wrenched the shoes off the sleeping man and ran away. He wrenched off the catsup bottle cap.
See also: off, wrench

wrench something out of something

to yank or twist something out of something. The policeman wrenched the gun out of Lefty's hand and told Lefty to put his hands up. Tom wrenched the bone out of the dog's mouth and threw it away.
See also: of, out, wrench

throw a monkey wrench into

Sabotage or frustrate a project or plans, as in The boss threw a monkey wrench into our plans when he said we'd have to work Saturday. This transfer of industrial sabotage-that is, throwing a tool inside machinery-to other subjects dates from the early 1900s.
See also: monkey, throw, wrench

throw a wrench into the works

or

throw a monkey wrench into the works

AMERICAN
If someone or something throws a wrench into the works or throws a monkey wrench into the works, they cause problems which prevent something from happening in the way that was planned. Of course they may not sign the agreement by the sixteenth and that would throw a monkey wrench into the works. Note: Instead of saying the works, people often describe the situation in which the problem is caused. Most health-related problems, of course, are not life-threatening, but they can throw a wrench into an otherwise pleasant holiday. The US delegation threw a giant monkey wrench into the process this week by raising all sorts of petty objections. Note: The usual British expression is throw a spanner in the works.
See also: throw, work, wrench

left-handed monkey wrench

n. a nonexistent tool. (see also sky hook.) Hand me the left-handed monkey wrench, huh?
See also: monkey, wrench

wrench

n. a mechanic. (Possibly from Mr. Goodwrench.) I gotta get my ride in and have a wrench look at the serpentine.