Results 1 to 7 of 7
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 57
    #1

    Something in my car has broken down

    When a person, whose car is broken down at the moment because of some breakdown, comes to a mechanic, what should he say?

    Something in my car has broken down.
    or
    Something in my car broke down.

    I think that both are possible but what is the difference then?

    P.S. Can you check the punctuation right in the first sentence, please?

    Cheers


    • Join Date: May 2008
    • Posts: 1,157
    #2

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    I wouldn't say either of them. I would say: "Seems like my car has a problem. (Could you fix it?)"

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 57
    #3

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    Thank you, but still I would like to get an answer to my question according to the sentences I have written.
    Does somebody know that?


    • Join Date: Apr 2009
    • Posts: 394
    #4

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    Daruma's sentence is fine.

    However, pedro8686, be aware of one thing: it's not something in your car that breaks down or has broken down. It's just your car. Either verb tense could be used. That's not your problem. It broke down (past), and that certainly has impact or influence at the moment of speaking (present perfect). (Past tense broke down is probably more common in my opinion.)

    If your car breaks down (which means it won't run) and you either do not know or do not wish to attempt to describe what exactly is wrong with it, then just say My car broke down / has broken down.

    On the other hand, if you do know what is wrong with it and wish to inform the mechanic, then say something like

    I think my (name of car part) is broken.

    Incidentally, the punctuation in your original sentence is correct, but you really don't need the first two commas.

    Greg
    Last edited by dragn; 31-May-2009 at 16:59.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 57
    #5

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    I think my (name of car part) is broken.
    What about saying:
    I think my (name of car part) has broken.
    What would be the difference then?


    • Join Date: Apr 2009
    • Posts: 394
    #6

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    What about saying:
    I think my (name of car part) has broken.
    What would be the difference then?
    It's OK; it makes perfect sense and is essentially equivalent to using present tense in such a situation. However, my instinct tells me that not very many native speakers would say it this way.

    Greg

  1. engee30's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Apr 2006
    • Posts: 2,969
    #7

    Re: Something in my car has broken down

    Quote Originally Posted by pedro8686 View Post
    What about saying:
    I think my (name of car part) has broken.
    What would be the difference then?
    The difference between using the present perfect and the present simple form of the verb be followed by an adjective is that the former expresses a change, while the latter a state. In Polish, the difference is as follows:
    zepsuł się (perfect)
    vs
    jest zepsuty (simple present)
    Last edited by engee30; 31-May-2009 at 21:26.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •