Up, Up, and Away!

There are many compound words in our business that start and end in “up.”

The following are not hyphenated:

Backup                        Updip

Scaleup                        Uphole


The following expressions are two separate words when used as a verb, and one word with no hyphen when used as a noun or adjective:

                        Bean up (verb)             beanup (noun, adjective)

                        Build up (verb)             buildup (noun, adjective)

                        Clean up (verb)            cleanup (noun, adjective)

                        Hook up (verb)            hookup (noun, adjective)

                        Jack up (verb)              jackup (noun, adjective)

                        Lock up (verb)             lockup (noun, adjective)

                        Make up (verb)            makeup (noun, adjective)

                        Pick up (verb)              pickup (noun, adjective)

                        Set up (verb)                setup (noun, adjective)

                        Start up (verb)              startup (noun, adjective)


We let the pressure build up to 20,000 psi even though the buildup test was only supposed to go up to 15,000 psi.

I told her to clean up that mess in the microwave oven, but the cleanup crew ended up doing it for her.

It took them all day to jack up that jackup rig due to the sandy seafloor.

Because the jailer did not lock up, the criminals escaped the lockup facility.

He used his best pickup line to try to pick up girls at the bar and take them home in his pickup truck.

He attempted to start up the generator by pushing the startup button on the startup date.

And of course there are a few exceptions:

“Fill up,” “follow up” and “ramp up” are two words when used as a verb, but hyphenated as nouns or adjectives.


Boy, do I need a fill-up! Fill up the tank with super premium, please.

You better follow up on that sales lead. I expect you to make a follow-up call today.

Steam generation capacity is going to ramp up considerably, but we have no idea how long the ramp-up period is going to be.


4 Responses to “Up, Up, and Away!”

  1. On the Up-and-Up « Technical Writing Tips for the Oil Patch Says:

    […] one of my Tips of the Day last year  titled “Up, Up  and Away” (https://oilpatchwriting.wordpress.com/2010/04/07/up-up-and-away/), I covered some words that began with “up” that were hyphenated and some that were […]

  2. office building maintenance Says:

    Wonderful blog you have here but I was curious if you
    knew of any user discussion forums that cover the same topics talked about here?
    I’d really love to be a part of group where I can get responses from other knowledgeable people that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Appreciate it!

  3. Along With « Technical Writing Tips for the Oil Patch Says:

    […] BTW, did you notice that “lookup” table was not hyphenated? See my previous post for other –up words that are not yphenated:https://oilpatchwriting.wordpress.com/2010/04/07/up-up-and-away/ […]

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