New & experienced writers alike often confuse the words “due to” and “do to”. This may seem like a meaningless mistake, but this spelling error completely changes the meaning of your writing. Luckily, there are a few easy tricks to avoid this basic grammar error. In this post, we’ll break down how to choose between “due to” or “do to”.
Which Is Correct: “Due To” or “Do To”?
Confusing “due to” and “do to” is one of the most common grammar errors that writers make. Just like the phrase “a unique” or “an unique”, writers just can’t seem to get it right. You might hear people say, “Do to my poor blood test results, I have to start a new diet.” But is this correct?
- “Due To“: This phrase is used to mean “caused by” or “because of”.
- “Do To“: Do to is never the correct option. This phrase is a corruption of the phrase “done to,” and it simply doesn’t make sense.
Takeaway: It is never correct to use “do to”. “Due to” is the correct word. Although they sound alike, these phrases have different meanings.
When To Use “Due To”
“Due to” is a phrase that means “because.” It is often used to describe the reason for something.
For example, “I was late for work due to traffic.”
The word “due” can be both an adjective and a noun.
- As an adjective, it can describe something that is owed or owed to someone. For example, you might say that you are “due a refund” if you have overpaid for something.
- As a noun, “due” refers to the amount of money that is owed. For example, you might say that you need to pay your “monthly dues” in order to maintain your membership in a club.
When To Use “Do To”
The phrase “do to” should never be used in your informal or formal writing. It is bad grammar. However, the word “do” has a variety of uses in the English language.
“Do” is both a verb and an auxiliary verb. As a verb, it means to perform an action, such as “I do the dishes.” It can also be used as an auxiliary verb to add emphasis, as in “I do like that shirt.” It is also used to create negative statements. For example, “I do not want to go to the mall today”.
Present tense conjugations of “do”:
- First Person Singular: I/We Do
- Third Person Plural: She/He Does
The past tense of “do” is the irregular verb “did”. For example, if you wanted to indicate that you canceled your Netflix subscription in the past, you might use the verb phrase “I did cancel Netflix.”
Use Because To Fix The Issue
If you can’t seem to wrap your head around the spelling of do vs due…that’s OK. If you can substitute the word “because” into the sentence, then “due” is the correct word.
“I was not able to make it to my baseball game due to my shoulder injury.”
In this example, it makes sense to substitute “due to” with “because”.
Trick To Remember
The two words do & due are homophones. In other words, they have the same pronunciation. Although there is just a subtle difference in the spelling, they have different meanings. Take the small difference between wear and ware for example. Here is a quick trick to choosing the right word.
The word “due” means expected. If you can remember that both expected & due have the letter E, then you can easily choose between do & due.
Synonyms for “Due to the Fact”
We all know that “due to the fact” is one of those phrases that should be used sparingly in your writing. Here are some synonyms you can use:
- For that reason
- On the grounds that
- Thanks to the fact that
Quiz: Due vs Do
To test your knowledge, here is a quick quiz on due vs do.
- I will ___ the task.
- __ to the fact that it’s raining, I will not be going for a run.
- I can’t make it to the football game ___ to the weather.
- I am going to __ it…just give me some time.
As people get more used to informal conversations via text message & social media, it has become more important than ever to edit & proofread. Lucky for you, we have our very own spell checker that you can use to double-check your work. Take a few extra seconds to use our tool and avoid making an embarrassing typo.
A simple trick is that if the phrase can be replaced with ‘because’ then you should pick ‘due to something’. For example, “I took the long way to work due to an accident on my normal path.”
In most situations, we use “due to” to present the reason for a noun. For example, “The meeting was canceled due to the snowstorm.” In this sentence, the snowstorm is the reason for the cancellation of the meeting.
The word “due” is an adjective that shows something is expected or needs to be paid. For example, a bill is due on the first of the month, meaning it’s expected to be paid by that date. However, if you use the plural form, then it can be used as a noun. For example, ” as a member of the club, I must pay my dues each month.”
They can both be correct. “Just do it” is an imperative phrase that means to perform an action without overthinking it. “Due” is an adjective meaning “owed” or “required”. So when someone says “just do it”, they’re telling you to go ahead and do whatever it is that needs to be done without thinking too much about it. However, if you wanted to say that your boss won’t give you the rais that you deserve you might say, “my boss refuses to give me my just due.”
‘Make do’ is the proper usage. The word ‘Due’ is an adjective that means something that is owed or in reference to a specific date. For example, “I owe you $10” or “the homework is due Tuesday.” A correct way to use the idiom ‘make do’ would be, “I don’t have a lot of money, but I make do with what I have.”
‘Because of’ is used to modify vivid verbs, while ‘due to’ modifies nouns. For example, I am late because of traffic would be using ‘because of’ to modify the verb ‘late’, while Traffic congestion is due to a lack of infrastructure would be using ‘due to’ to modify the noun ‘congestion’. These phrases are often used interchangeably in the English language but they do not mean the same thing.
There are many different things you can write after “due to”. Some common phrases are “the following reasons”, “these are the reasons”, or “here are the reasons”. You can also list out a few specific reasons, or give a brief overview of the main points.
The Bottom Line
Now you know the difference between these two similar words. Remember, it is never correct to say “do to” in your writing. Use these grammar tips to improve your writing! And if you can’t master this grammar rule, give our grammar tool a try!