useful life


: the amount of time during which something is in good enough condition to be used
the useful life of a satellite

Examples of useful life in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web They must be forced to store enough fuel and retain the capability for spacecraft to steer safely out of space when their useful life is over. The Editors, Scientific American, 17 May 2024 These schedules often require businesses to deduct the cost of these investments over an extended period, which can be much longer than the useful life of the assets. Veronique De Rugy, Orange County Register, 23 May 2024 Plastic generally takes approximately 500 to 1,000 years to decompose, even though its useful life is only around 10 years. Armstrong Williams, Baltimore Sun, 28 Feb. 2024 For one thing, equipment at the connection points is 30 to 40 years old, and nearing the end of its useful life. IEEE Spectrum, 8 Aug. 2018 If the landlord applies for a rent increase based on capital improvements to a heating system, tenants can object by arguing that the existing system has not exceeded its useful life as outlined by the state. Jill Terreri Ramos, New York Times, 16 Mar. 2024 The chemical, a wood preservative and known carcinogen, was once routinely applied to telephone and electric poles to lengthen their useful life. Justin Wm. Moyer, Washington Post, 6 Mar. 2024 Avoid overspending on these items, considering their limited useful life. Pattie Ehsaei, Forbes, 15 Feb. 2024 If the inspection shows the roof has five or more years of useful life left, the insurance company could not reject coverage simply because of age. Lawrence Mower, Miami Herald, 30 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'useful life.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

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Cite this Entry

“Useful life.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Legal Definition

useful life

use·​ful life
: an estimated amount of time during which an asset or facility will yield income or be useful see also depreciation sense 1
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