How Do You Say “Maintain” In Spanish?

Spanish is a beautiful language that has captured the hearts of many. Whether you’re planning to visit a Spanish-speaking country or simply want to expand your linguistic horizons, learning Spanish can be a rewarding experience. But before you start stringing together sentences, it’s important to master the basics. One crucial word that you’ll need to know is “maintain”.

The Spanish translation for “maintain” is “mantener”. This word is used to describe the act of keeping something in a particular state or condition. Whether it’s maintaining your car or your health, “mantener” is a versatile verb that you’ll find yourself using frequently in everyday conversation.

How Do You Pronounce The Spanish Word For “Maintain”?

If you’re learning Spanish, it’s essential to know how to pronounce words correctly. “Maintain” is a common verb that you’ll encounter often in everyday conversations. In Spanish, “maintain” is “mantener.”

Phonetic Breakdown

Here’s a phonetic breakdown of “mantener”:

Letter(s) Pronunciation
n EHn
te TEH
ner NEHr

In Spanish, each letter has a consistent pronunciation. Once you learn the sounds each letter makes, you’ll be able to pronounce any word correctly.

Tips For Pronunciation

  • Practice the “a” sound. In Spanish, the “a” sound is pronounced like “ah.” Make sure to open your mouth wide and say “ah” instead of “ay.”
  • Pay attention to the stress. In “mantener,” the stress falls on the second syllable. Make sure to emphasize this syllable when you say the word.
  • Listen to native speakers. The best way to improve your pronunciation is to listen to how native speakers say the word. Watch Spanish-language movies or TV shows, listen to Spanish-language music, or find a language exchange partner to practice with.

With these tips and a little practice, you’ll be able to say “mantener” and other Spanish words with confidence.

Proper Grammatical Use Of The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

Proper grammar is essential when using the Spanish word for “maintain.” Incorrect usage of the word can lead to confusion and miscommunication. In this section, we will discuss the various aspects of proper grammatical use of the Spanish word for “maintain.”

Placement Of “Maintain” In Sentences

The Spanish word for “maintain” is “mantener.” It is a regular verb and is used in various contexts. The placement of “mantener” in sentences depends on the type of sentence and the tense being used. In general, “mantener” is placed after the subject of the sentence and before the object. For example:

  • Yo mantengo mi casa limpia. (I maintain my house clean.)
  • Él mantiene su coche en buen estado. (He maintains his car in good condition.)

Verb Conjugations Or Tenses

Like all Spanish verbs, “mantener” has different conjugations depending on the tense and the subject. Here are the conjugations of “mantener” in the present tense:

Subject Conjugation
Yo mantengo
Él/Ella/Usted mantiene
Nosotros/Nosotras mantenemos
Vosotros/Vosotras mantenéis
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedes mantienen

It’s important to note that the past participle of “mantener” is “mantenido.” This is used when forming compound tenses such as the present perfect:

  • He mantenido mi promesa. (I have maintained my promise.)
  • Hemos mantenido nuestras tradiciones. (We have maintained our traditions.)

Agreement With Gender And Number

When using “mantener” in a sentence, it is important to make sure that it agrees with the gender and number of the subject. For example:

  • Él mantiene su jardín hermoso. (He maintains his garden beautiful.)
  • Ella mantiene sus plantas saludables. (She maintains her plants healthy.)
  • Ellos mantienen sus animales felices. (They maintain their animals happy.)

Common Exceptions

There are some common exceptions when using “mantener” in Spanish. For example, when talking about maintaining a relationship, the verb “mantener” is often replaced with “sostener.” Another exception is when talking about maintaining a conversation, where “mantener” is often replaced with “continuar.” It’s important to be aware of these exceptions to avoid confusion and miscommunication.

Examples Of Phrases Using The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

When it comes to learning a new language, it’s important to understand how to use common words and phrases in everyday conversation. One such word is “maintain,” which is translated to “mantener” in Spanish. Here are some examples of phrases using the Spanish word for “maintain” and how they are used in sentences:


  • “Mantener la calma” – To maintain calm.
  • “Es importante mantener el orden” – It’s important to maintain order.
  • “Mantener la higiene personal” – To maintain personal hygiene.
  • “No puedo mantener esta mentira por más tiempo” – I can’t maintain this lie any longer.
  • “Si quieres mantener una relación saludable, debes comunicarte” – If you want to maintain a healthy relationship, you must communicate.

As you can see, “mantener” can be used in a variety of contexts and situations. It’s a versatile word that can be applied to many aspects of life, from personal hygiene to interpersonal relationships.

Example Dialogue:

Here’s an example of a conversation in Spanish that uses the word “mantener” in a few different phrases:

Spanish English Translation
“Hola, ¿cómo estás?” “Hi, how are you?”
“Estoy bien, gracias. ¿Y tú?” “I’m good, thanks. And you?”
“Estoy tratando de mantener mi casa limpia, pero es difícil con los niños.” “I’m trying to maintain a clean house, but it’s difficult with the kids.”
“Sí, entiendo. Yo también tengo hijos. Pero es importante mantener la higiene en el hogar.” “Yes, I understand. I have kids too. But it’s important to maintain cleanliness in the home.”
“Sí, definitivamente. Y también trato de mantener una dieta saludable.” “Yes, definitely. And I also try to maintain a healthy diet.”
“Eso es excelente. Mantener una dieta saludable es fundamental para la salud.” “That’s great. Maintaining a healthy diet is crucial for health.”

This dialogue shows how “mantener” can be used in everyday conversation to talk about maintaining cleanliness and a healthy diet. It’s a useful word to know when communicating with Spanish speakers.

More Contextual Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

When it comes to the Spanish word for “maintain,” there are various contexts in which it can be used. Understanding these different contexts can help you use the word more accurately and effectively in your Spanish conversations and writing.

Formal Usage Of “Maintain”

In formal settings, the Spanish word for “maintain” is often used to describe keeping something in a certain state or condition. For example:

  • Mantener la limpieza en la casa. (Maintain cleanliness in the house.)
  • Es importante mantener la calma en situaciones difíciles. (It’s important to maintain calm in difficult situations.)
  • Los trabajadores deben mantener la seguridad en el lugar de trabajo. (Workers must maintain safety in the workplace.)

Using “mantener” in this way conveys a sense of responsibility and duty to keep things in order.

Informal Usage Of “Maintain”

In more casual settings, the word “mantener” can take on a slightly different meaning. It can be used to describe keeping up with something or continuing to do something. For example:

  • Si quieres bajar de peso, tienes que mantener una dieta saludable. (If you want to lose weight, you have to maintain a healthy diet.)
  • Para aprender un nuevo idioma, es importante mantener la práctica. (To learn a new language, it’s important to maintain practice.)
  • Si quieres mantener una buena relación con alguien, tienes que comunicarte bien. (If you want to maintain a good relationship with someone, you have to communicate well.)

In these contexts, “mantener” implies a sense of consistency and perseverance.

Other Contexts

Aside from the formal and informal uses of “mantener,” there are also other contexts in which the word can be used. These include:

  • Slang: In some Spanish-speaking countries, “mantener” can be used as slang to mean “to have sex with.” This usage is considered vulgar and should be avoided in polite conversation.
  • Idiomatic expressions: There are several common idiomatic expressions in Spanish that use “mantener.” For example, “mantenerse en forma” means “to stay in shape,” while “mantenerse al margen” means “to stay out of it” or “to stay on the sidelines.”
  • Cultural/historical: “Mantener” can also be used in certain cultural or historical contexts. For example, in Spain, the phrase “mantener la dignidad” (maintain dignity) was a rallying cry during the Spanish Civil War.

Popular Cultural Usage

One popular cultural usage of “mantener” is in the title of the song “Mantener Escolta” by the Spanish rapper C. Tangana. The phrase “mantener escolta” roughly translates to “maintain guard” or “keep watch,” and the song explores themes of loyalty and vigilance.

Regional Variations Of The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

Just like any other language, Spanish has its own variations depending on the region. This means that the way certain words are pronounced and used can vary greatly from one Spanish-speaking country to another. The word for “maintain” is no exception to this rule.

Usage Of The Spanish Word For Maintain In Different Spanish-speaking Countries

When it comes to the word “maintain,” there are several variations of the Spanish word depending on the country. For example, in Spain, the word for maintain is “mantener.” In Mexico, it is “mantener” as well, but it can also be “conservar.” In other countries such as Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay, the word for maintain is “mantener” as well, but it can also be “sostener” or “sostenerse.”

It is important to note that while these words may have the same meaning, they may not be used interchangeably. For example, in Mexico, “mantener” is the more commonly used term for maintain, while “conservar” is used more often to refer to preserving something.

Regional Pronunciations

Pronunciation can also vary across regions. For example, in Spain, the “t” in “mantener” is pronounced with a soft “th” sound, while in Latin America, it is pronounced with a hard “t” sound. Additionally, in Argentina and Uruguay, the “r” sound is pronounced with a more guttural sound than in other Spanish-speaking countries.

It is always important to be aware of these regional variations when communicating in Spanish. While it can be tempting to use the same word for “maintain” across all Spanish-speaking countries, it is important to use the appropriate word depending on the region and context.

Other Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Maintain” In Speaking & Writing

While “mantener” is commonly used to refer to maintaining physical objects, it can also have a variety of other meanings in different contexts. It is important to understand these different uses in order to use the word correctly and avoid miscommunication.

1. Maintaining Relationships

One common use of “mantener” is to refer to maintaining relationships with others. This can include romantic relationships, friendships, or even professional relationships. For example, you might say:

  • “Mantengo una buena relación con mi pareja” (I maintain a good relationship with my partner)
  • “Es importante mantener una buena relación con tus compañeros de trabajo” (It’s important to maintain a good relationship with your coworkers)

In these cases, “mantener” is used to convey the idea of working to keep a relationship healthy and positive.

2. Maintaining A Standard Or Level Of Quality

Another use of “mantener” is to refer to maintaining a certain standard or level of quality. This can apply to anything from personal habits to professional work. For example:

  • “Intento mantener un alto nivel de limpieza en mi hogar” (I try to maintain a high level of cleanliness in my home)
  • “Es importante mantener la calidad de nuestro trabajo” (It’s important to maintain the quality of our work)

In these cases, “mantener” is used to convey the idea of striving to keep something at a certain level.

3. Maintaining A Position Or Status

Finally, “mantener” can also be used to refer to maintaining a certain position or status. This can apply to anything from a political office to a social standing. For example:

  • “El presidente ha mantenido su posición sobre este tema desde el inicio” (The president has maintained his position on this issue from the beginning)
  • “Es importante mantener nuestra reputación en la comunidad” (It’s important to maintain our reputation in the community)

In these cases, “mantener” is used to convey the idea of holding onto something or keeping it steady.

Overall, it is important to be aware of the different uses of “mantener” in order to use it correctly in different contexts. By understanding these nuances, you can communicate more effectively in Spanish and avoid misunderstandings.

Common Words And Phrases Similar To The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

Synonyms And Related Terms

When it comes to finding words and phrases similar to the Spanish word for “maintain,” there are several options that can be used interchangeably. Some of the most common synonyms and related terms include:

  • Conservar
  • Preservar
  • Guardar
  • Continuar
  • Permanecer

Each of these words has a slightly different meaning, but they can all be used to convey the idea of maintaining something. For example:

  • Conservar: This word is often used to refer to preserving food or other perishable items. However, it can also be used more broadly to refer to maintaining anything in good condition.
  • Preservar: Similar to conservar, this word is often used to refer to preserving something in its original state. It can also be used to refer to maintaining something in good condition.
  • Guardar: This word is often used to refer to storing something or keeping something safe. However, it can also be used to refer to maintaining something in good condition.
  • Continuar: While this word is not an exact synonym for “maintain,” it can be used in certain contexts to convey a similar idea. For example, if you want to maintain a certain level of productivity, you might say “quiero continuar trabajando a este ritmo.”
  • Permanecer: This word is often used to refer to staying in one place or remaining in a certain state. However, it can also be used to refer to maintaining something in good condition.


On the other hand, there are also several antonyms or opposite words to the Spanish word for “maintain.” These words convey the opposite idea of maintaining something and can be useful to know when trying to communicate effectively. Some common antonyms include:

  • Destruir
  • Descomponer
  • Deteriorar
  • Abandonar
  • Dejar de lado

Each of these words conveys the idea of not maintaining something or allowing it to fall into disrepair. For example:

  • Destruir: This word means “to destroy” and conveys the idea of intentionally causing damage or harm to something.
  • Descomponer: This word means “to decompose” or “to break down” and can be used to refer to something falling apart or deteriorating over time.
  • Deteriorar: This word means “to deteriorate” and can be used to refer to something gradually falling into disrepair or becoming less effective over time.
  • Abandonar: This word means “to abandon” and conveys the idea of completely neglecting something or leaving it behind.
  • Dejar de lado: This phrase means “to put aside” or “to neglect” and can be used to refer to not maintaining something or failing to give it the attention it needs.

Mistakes To Avoid When Using The Spanish Word For “Maintain”

When it comes to using the Spanish word for “maintain,” many non-native speakers make common mistakes due to the nuances of the language. One of the most common errors is using the word “mantener” in place of “conservar.” While both words can be translated to “maintain” in English, they have different connotations in Spanish. “Mantener” implies the act of keeping something in a certain condition or state, while “conservar” refers to preserving something in its original state.

Another mistake that non-native speakers make is using the word “sostener” instead of “mantener” or “conservar.” “Sostener” means “to hold up” or “to support,” so it is not an appropriate replacement for “maintain.”


In this blog post, we explored the different ways to say “maintain” in Spanish. We began by discussing the most commonly used verb “mantener” and its various conjugations. We then delved into alternative options such as “conservar,” “sostener,” and “guardar.” It’s important to note that each of these verbs has a slightly different connotation and usage, so it’s essential to understand the nuances of each option.

We also discussed some common phrases and expressions that use the word “maintain” in Spanish, such as “mantener en buen estado” (to keep in good condition) and “mantener el equilibrio” (to maintain balance). These phrases can be incredibly useful in everyday conversations and can help you sound more natural when speaking with native Spanish speakers.

Encouragement To Practice

Learning a new language takes time and practice, and the same is true when it comes to mastering the various ways to say “maintain” in Spanish. However, with dedication and persistence, you can improve your skills and become more confident in your ability to communicate effectively in Spanish.

We encourage you to practice using these different verbs and phrases in real-life conversations with native Spanish speakers. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; it’s all part of the learning process. The more you practice, the more natural and comfortable you will become with the language.

Remember, learning a new language is a journey, not a destination. So enjoy the process and have fun exploring the rich and diverse world of the Spanish language!

Shawn Manaher

Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority and He’s a seasoned innovator, harnessing the power of technology to connect cultures through language. His worse translation though is when he refers to “pancakes” as “flat waffles”.