Out of Order – Essential Chinese Vocabulary

From the image below it’s probably self evident that the Chinese characters written on the paper that is stuck over the coin slot mean ‘out of order’. Though this is still a word worth learning to enable you to explain when a machine is broken, or stop you from wasting money in an out-of-order vending machine!

故障(故障)

Pinyin: gù zhàng
English: Out of order; to malfunction

Out of Order - Essential Chinese Vocabulary

Vocabulary

The machine above is a coin operated pressure washer for washing cars and motorbikes. The vocabulary for the rest of the Chines is as follows:

清潔劑(清洁剂)

Pinyin: qīng jié jì
English: soap, detergent

使用(使用)

Pinyin: shǐ yòng
English: to use

高壓(高压)

Pinyin: gāo yā
English: high pressure

敬告(敬告)

Pinyin: jìng gào
English: attention; warning

槍(枪)

Pinyin: qiāng
English: a gun

噴灑(喷洒)

Pinyin: pēn sǎ
English: to spray

嬉戲(嬉戏)

Pinyin: xī xì
English: to mess about; to play about

Transcript/Translation

From left to right, top to bottom the rest of the Chinese reads:

Traditional
清潔劑 使用時間1.2分鐘
限投10元硬幣
高壓清水
使用時間2分鐘
敬告!使用水槍請勿對人噴灑或嬉戲,以免造成危險

Simplified
清洁剂 使用时间1.2分钟
限投10元硬币
高压清水
使用时间2分钟
敬告!使用水枪请勿对人喷洒或嬉戏,以免造成危险

Pinyin
qīng jié jì shǐ yòng shí jiān 1.2 fēn zhōng
xiàn tóu 10 yuán yìng bì
gāo yā qīng shuǐ
shǐ yòng shí jiān 2 fēn zhōng
jìng gào! shǐ yòng shuǐ qiāng qǐng wù duì rén pēn sǎ huò xī xì, yǐ miǎn zào chéng wéi xiǎn

English
Soap/Cleaning Agent – usage time 1.2 minutes
$10 coin only
High pressure clear water – usage time 2 minutes
Attention! To avoid danger when using the water gun, please refrain from spraying other people or fooling around

Something of note is that if you wanted to say that your computer had crashed, in Taiwan you would say it was 當機了(当机了 dāng jī le) and in China 死機了(死机了 sǐ jī le), while 故障 might just mean something had gone wrong, but the computer hasn;t neccessarily crashed. (If anyone can confirm/clarify this please post a message below)

  • bohong

    Dave there is a problem with 敬告 it s Jìnggào not gu zhang

    • Cut & Paste is really coming back to bite me recently. Thanks for letting me know! I have corrected the Pinyin.

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