Definition of serviceable in English:



  • 1Fulfilling its function adequately; usable.

    ‘an ageing but still serviceable water supply system’
    • ‘The DBI is actually a continuing art project that functions as a satirical yet serviceable institution (of the anti-institutional variety).’
    • ‘The Arts Parkade turns out to be a serviceable venue for Greek tragedy, with an upper ramp allowing for a two-tiered set and all that cold concrete creating an eerie echo.’
    • ‘The old Royal High School has a serviceable chamber for debate and office space across the road at the St Andrew's House complex, with more space available if the site opposite where the Crown Office once stood was developed.’
    • ‘The clothes he had donned that morning were old, but serviceable.’
    • ‘Once you could buy a decent suit and a serviceable pair of shoes here.’
    • ‘But whether they're serviceable or not is debatable.’
    • ‘He saw the behaviour and language associated with such ideas as serviceable functions, highly developed in humans, but having roots in the behaviour of pre-human animals.’
    • ‘As a description of a function in an organism the word is perfectly serviceable.’
    • ‘This assesses things like whether a person has a decent coat, two serviceable pairs of shoes and the ability to afford meat, chicken or fish for dinner at least every second day.’
    • ‘If you have that much money to spend on a pair of shoes then spend £115 on a perfectly serviceable pair of reasonable quality shoes and give £500 to charity.’
    • ‘The serviceable track undulates and crosses many gullies, the trees are thinned, you can see out north over pretty fields, tightly bound by the curving wooded escarpment.’
    • ‘And that makes it more than serviceable for the normal run of fanatical ideologues, confirmed partisans and weak-minded bumpkins to make use of endlessly.’
    • ‘And I must say she's been a very serviceable vehicle.’
    • ‘Is there a serviceable record store closer than Pittsburgh?’
    • ‘In those days there was usually a second hand clothes dealer somewhere in the district so Cockler was never short of a serviceable warm jacket and coat.’
    • ‘You get a private room - simple but serviceable - with a small changing area, a fresh-water shower and your jet-enhanced tub.’
    • ‘Nestled below the half-bottle of Champagne and assorted supermarket delicacies, was a serviceable souvenir rain poncho.’
    • ‘He calls ‘functionalism’ a serviceable concept, and notes that he, like all other anthropologists, use it and its theories.’
    • ‘Following that is an adapted version of the rules, which seem perfectly serviceable to my eye.’
    • ‘I'm sure there's some perfectly serviceable legislation already in place that would force him to turn down the megaphone if it exceeds a certain decibel level.’
    • ‘His kitchen is small but perfectly serviceable, especially for a doctor who tends to order room service or eat in restaurants.’
    in working order, working, functioning, functional, operational, operative
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    1. 1.1In working order.
      ‘only twelve aircraft were fully serviceable this morning’
      • ‘A number of operation modes can be used if equipment is not serviceable.’
      • ‘‘They were both responsible for making the aircraft serviceable, and were highly-skilled and professional men,’ he said.’
      • ‘Rail watchdogs blamed the overcrowding on a combination of train operator One's unpopular new timetable and shortage of serviceable rolling stock.’
      • ‘‘It is important to check oil levels, the coolant levels and the hydraulic fuel regularly and to make sure the spare wheel is serviceable,’ Mr Faughnan added.’
      • ‘This vital work will ensure that the car park remains serviceable and safe for users in the future years to come.’
      • ‘Under normal operational conditions, a serviceable object becomes unserviceable by reason of malfunction.’
      • ‘A technical team from BA reported in June that the capital's airport was serviceable despite damage sustained during the recent conflict but some doubt still hovers over the reopening.’
      • ‘Together, these functions will ensure that only serviceable munitions go to the front lines, thus keeping soldiers supplied and the logistics footprint minimized.’
      • ‘‘The maintainers who keep the aircraft serviceable have learnt lessons there, to improve system knowledge to shorten servicing times,’ he said.’
      • ‘In order that the united network should remain serviceable in combat operations under such conditions, there should be a flexible and efficient system to control the composite network.’
      • ‘Sam Barker said his father and other personnel were ordered to evacuate, but there were only four serviceable aircraft.’
  • 2Functional and durable rather than attractive.

    ‘sturdy, serviceable laced-up shoes’
    • ‘She glanced at her watch - a plain, serviceable black Swatch she had received last Christmas from her uncle.’
    • ‘However, most of the time it is perfectly serviceable and it is attracting many business users as well as technically savvy and cost-conscious students.’
    • ‘She had serviceable furniture, a few photos and two paintings on the wall.’
    • ‘They made tools, ploughshares, chariots, chain armour, and many more strong and serviceable implements.’
    • ‘The dinghies on our lake were serviceable, not showy: hand-me-downs with dented motors and countless coats of varnish.’
    functional, utilitarian, sensible, practical, non-decorative, plain, unadorned
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Middle English (in the sense ‘willing to be of service’): from Old French servisable, from servise (see service).