Definition of unblock in US English:



[with object]
  • 1Remove an obstruction from (something, especially a pipe or drain)

    ‘balloon catheters are used to unblock occluded arteries’
    • ‘Sadly for patients with stroke, the heart attack doctors are not just in the lead, they are out of sight evaluating and now establishing intra-arterial chemical and physical approaches to unblocking the pipes fast.’
    • ‘Other procedures to unblock the bile ducts are called ERCP and PTC - they involve widening the bile duct and inserting a tube to drain the blocked fluids.’
    • ‘They could also lobby Bradford Council to ensure gullies are cleared and drains unblocked.’
    • ‘Engineers have already had one attempt at unblocking the sewer, but their jet-spray equipment was not powerful enough to reach the blockage.’
    • ‘They must be reapplied frequently (ie, three to four times per day) because excessive sweating unblocks the ducts.’
    • ‘Tonight Eton and I fumigated his apartment, and unblocked the bathroom drain.’
    • ‘The money could have been spent on the green or unblocking the drains or on the paths.’
    • ‘Based on the research, Simons cautions against using angiogenic drugs to unblock arteries in certain heart conditions.’
    • ‘His health nightmares began when a German surgeon bungled a routine operation to unblock his arteries eight years ago.’
    • ‘Engineers are currently wading through storerooms and unblocking sewers in a bid to make the ‘dungeon’, as it has been dubbed by airport employees, fit for business by the end of 2006.’
    • ‘Once the renal arteries are unblocked and blood flow to the kidneys improves, blood pressure usually returns to normal.’
    • ‘A modified magnetic scan can tell patients whether cholesterol-lowering statin drugs are actually unblocking their clogged arteries.’
    • ‘This is to be distinguished from typical plumbing such as a household having to have a drain unblocked or a hot water pipe mended.’
    • ‘Buffalo City Municipality reported that the only clean-up operation was to unblock storm drains.’
    • ‘This week council contractors were due to start work to unblock the pipe so surface water can run down to the river without businesses in the industrial estate getting flooded during heavy downpours.’
    • ‘The group has also undertaken several tasks of opportunity, like repairing bridges and water mains, unblocking sewers, fixing vehicles and building a school playground.’
    • ‘The drug, Paclitaxel, is meant to prevent restenosis, the narrowing of the arterial walls after a stent is inserted to unblock an artery.’
    • ‘The company will either unblock the pipe or, in a worst-case scenario, replace it all together - this can sometimes involve digging up the street.’
    • ‘University lecturers find themselves earning less than the people who unblock their sewers and fix their cars.’
    • ‘Based on your results, your doctor may decide, for instance, that you would benefit from having coronary angioplasty to help unblock clogged arteries.’
    unclog, unstop
    unobstructed, unblocked, passable, unimpeded, open, empty, free, unlimited, unrestricted, unhindered
    View synonyms
  • 2Restore access to or the use of (email or a website or mobile phone)

    ‘crooks are using software to unblock the phones so they can be resold’
    • ‘I got an auto-responder email back indicating that they would unblock the site, starting on the 10th.’
    • ‘The censors have unblocked the New York Times website, Washington Post website and other websites.’
    • ‘There is no public list of banned sites and no mechanism for citizens to petition to have a site unblocked.’
    • ‘While our Internet service includes filtering functionality, it is our customers who make the decisions about which categories are blocked or unblocked.’
    • ‘The customer is either too ignorant, or was told by sales that they were blocked already, but they will "unblock" them if they sign up today.’
    • ‘Unblocking a member will not return deleted messages to your inbox.’
    • ‘Some of the sites that were blocked when I did my original test in January are now unblocked.’
    • ‘Now that the link is unblocked, I can contact you.’
    • ‘And they said the same thing to her, that they were not able to unblock any of these sites, because our school had chosen to block them.’
    • ‘Finally, if the library wishes to track usage and unblocking requests, its reporting system should not maintain personally identifying information.’
    • ‘Your Personal Unblocking Key is an eight-digit number used to unblock your phone if you enter your PIN number incorrectly three times.’
    • ‘We must get the UK to unblock the site.’
    • ‘Access will only be unblocked on request to the phone companies.’
    • ‘It is, however, an easy matter to unblock a mobile phone account.’
    • ‘This reply then unblocks the sender and the two processes are free to operate independently once again.’
    • ‘This will mean that an account will be unblocked immediately a person pays the account.’
    • ‘Every one of them was unblocked at the SC administrator level.’
    • ‘What is a reasonable time frame that a library has to unblock a Web site or disable a filter upon request?’
    • ‘It was temporarily unblocked at my school district level last year, but when the list was updated, you were blocked once again.’
    • ‘At times, the Court discusses unblocking particular Web sites, which can be viewed as a narrower method of disabling a filter.’