Is there a word that entails the meaning of "I set it to zero"?

Note how this may not necessarily mean you reset something, as its default value may be something other than zero.

  • 7
    You zeroed it. Perfectly legit techie talk.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Jun 10, 2018 at 19:59
  • Can you clarify what exactly is being set to zero? The answer may vary depending on if you're talking about a scale, the memory of a computer, or a variable.
    – Laurel
    Commented Jun 11, 2018 at 1:53

3 Answers 3


Tare (from Wiktionary):

To set a zero value on an instrument (usually a balance) that discounts the starting point

So for instance, if you have a kitchen scale you can say:

I tared the scale. Throw in the next ingredient.

For measuring instruments other than weighing scales you can use:

Zero (from Wiktionary):

To set a measuring instrument to zero; to calibrate instrument scale to valid zero.

  • How tare you!..
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Jun 11, 2018 at 1:56

I believe that there are many ways to express this, and the most appropriate one depends on the context. For example

  • zero out: phase out or reduce to zero. Or zeroed.
  • nullify: make of no use or value; cancel out. Or nulled.

However, just using set to zero sounds reasonable to me...

  • +1 for zero out. -1 for nullify.
    – Jim
    Commented Jun 11, 2018 at 2:07


The correct scientific term is tare, as stated in the previous answer quoted from Wiktionary.

  • So what's the point of this "answer"?
    – Jim
    Commented Jun 11, 2018 at 2:09

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