I know うまくいく but I don't know how to say these sentences:

-I don't know how it works

-I think it worked!

-I don't think that's how it works

Thanks in advance :)

  • 3
    Just adding my two cents here, there will probably not be a word that can mean to work in all situations like english. In system development, we usually say something like 「システムがちゃんと動いています。」but, I dont think you could use the same to mean "The TV is working again". Oct 22, 2020 at 2:51
  • 4
    @FelipeOliveira -- ya, 「テレビがちゃんと動いています」 sounds super strange! 😂 (Might just be my non-native perspective and the nearness of Halloween...) Oct 22, 2020 at 21:25
  • 3
    Actually we ( well at least some of us ) do use 動く to talk about whether a TV is working or not working ( like「テレビちゃんと動いてる?」「テレビ動かんくなった」). By the way, is your TV running?
    – goldbrick
    Oct 23, 2020 at 23:48
  • @HooverGonzalez there are many ways to convey these meanings, it depends a lot on the context. Please specify in which context you want to use these sentences.
    – wip
    Oct 24, 2020 at 12:53

1 Answer 1


The problem with the question is that the three sentences have completely different meanings, even though they share the same English word. Because the meaning of "works" in English changes depending on the context, there is no direct translation to Japanese. Some possibilities:

I don't know how it works

Same as "I don't know how it functions"


I think it worked!


I don't think that's how it works

Same as "your understanding is incorrect"


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