Definition of clapped-out in US English:



  • (of a vehicle, machine, or person) worn out from age or heavy use and unable to work or operate.

    ‘a clapped-out old van’
    • ‘They cannot trust the old, clapped-out radios in their packs to work when they need them.’
    • ‘The once frequent sound of the old clapped-out car back-firing has become a thing of the past, and many of us now take our cars by the hand to the NCT Centre, hoping they will pass the rigorous test.’
    • ‘One long summer, everything changes for Dizzy: her mother turns up out of the blue after eight years, and whisks her off in a clapped-out van for a summer of free living at festivals.’
    • ‘The film is set in Buenos Aires in January 1952, as two friends set out on a clapped-out old Norton motorbike to fulfil a restless urge to see the rest of South America before settling down to their medical careers.’
    • ‘We invariably travelled on some clapped-out smelly bus that made us nauseous with the diesel fumes.’
    • ‘Instead we found ourselves trundling everywhere in a clapped-out truck along roads with challenging surfaces.’
    • ‘Wednesday night's executive committee decided that the current civic vehicle, a 1988 Vauxhall Carlton, was old and clapped-out.’
    • ‘Yes, I know what you're thinking - it's like I've been given the keys to a Rolls Royce when I'm used to driving a rusty clapped-out Mini Metro…’
    • ‘It wasn't just that he fell victim to political correctness; audiences had been shrinking for some time and the format was horribly clapped-out.’
    • ‘They see this as money wasted on people who are too old and clapped-out to be exploited for profit.’
    • ‘Motorists getting rid of clapped-out cars will be told they must pay up to £100 to recycle them.’
    • ‘These same emissions zones will also catch clapped-out old bangers and poorly-maintained lorries and vans.’
    • ‘If it's a clapped-out old banger you lose your temper, kick the tyres and scream curses when it won't start.’
    • ‘A group of Bradford friends are planning an ambitious 3,222 mile charity crusade around the UK - in a set of four clapped-out old Ford Fiestas.’
    • ‘It was left to Irwin Stelzer, one of the country's leading economists, to spell out yesterday the consequences of continuing to live with a clapped-out, underfunded system.’
    • ‘He also regularly carried out repairs to an assortment of clapped-out cars which regularly littered his garden and surrounding streets.’
    • ‘Anyway, the drive home along the coast road gave me ample time to wonder what possesses people in clapped-out, overladen vans to drive at 30 kmph without regard to gradient, curves or following traffic.’
    • ‘What real advantages are there to be gained from resurrecting a clapped-out scheme that was halted belatedly in the early 1960s?’
    • ‘So, if your clapped-out old banger goes phut-phut one day on the motorway, then don't hesitate to dip into your emergency fund to fix it.’
    • ‘Under new European Union rules, motorists must pay up to £100 to recycle their clapped-out cars, instead of receiving £20-40 for them from a scrap metal dealer.’
    shabby, well worn, worn, worn to shreds, threadbare, tattered, in tatters, in ribbons, in rags, in holes, holey, falling to pieces, falling apart at the seams, ragged, frayed, patched, moth-eaten, faded, seedy, shoddy, sorry, scruffy, dilapidated, crumbling, broken-down, run down, tumbledown, decrepit, deteriorated, on its last legs, having seen better days, time-worn
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