verb (used with object)

  1. to replace or rearrange the tools and machinery of (a factory).
  2. to reorganize or rearrange, usually for the purpose of updating: to retool the industrial organization.

verb (used without object)

  1. to replace or rearrange the tools of a factory.
  2. to replace the stamping machinery of a factory, especially to make a remodeled product.


  1. to replace, re-equip, or rearrange the tools in (a factory, etc)
  2. mainly US and Canadian to revise or reorganize

1866, “to shape again with a tool,” from re- “back, again” + tool (v.). Meaning “to furnish a factory with new equipment” is recorded from 1940. Related: Retooled; retooling.

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