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5 facts that you need to know about Breathalyzer before buying one


Recently, we have seen an increase in interest for breathalyzer among our customers and as not everyone really knows much about breathalyzer, we hopes to be able to help you clarify some basic questions about breathalyzers here.

If you are already considering purchasing a breathalyzer or simply wants to know more about breathalyzers, we hope this post will be able to help provide you with more information in this aspect and if not, please feel free to drop us a comment or email us directly at .

  1. What is a Breathalyzer?

Breathalyzer, also known as an Alcohol tester or Drunkometer (this is actually what it used to be called, when it was initially invented in the 1930s), is a device used for estimating a person level of Blood Alcohol Content (BAC*) by measuring the amount of alcohol in one’s breath.

In other words, when you take in a breath and exhale it into the breathalyzer, it will measure the amount of alcohol found in the breath and provide you with an estimate on the level of blood alcohol content in your body (basically telling you whether you are sober or drunk and how drunk).

  1. What are the types of Breathalyzers that are commercially available?

Currently, these are the 3 main types of breathalyzers available:

i. Semiconductor Breathalyzer, which also commonly known as personal breathalyzer. This is the most basic type of breathalyzer that can provide pretty reliable BAC estimation at the most affordable price.

ii. Fuel Cell Breathalyzer, also known as the professional breathalyzer. This is commonly used by the law enforcer when doing spot check for drunk driving. The accuracy is higher than a semiconductor breathalyzer type and so is the price.

iii. Spectrophotometer Breathalyzer. This is the model that is usually found in the police station/lab and it provides the highest degree of accuracy among the 3 main types of breathalyzers when it comes to BAC measurements. However, spectrophotometer breathalyzer is not as portable as a semiconductor or fuel cell breathalyzer and it is much more costly (usually at least a few thousands dollar).

Due to the rise in demand for breathalyzer, these days, there are many different brands of breathalyzer being sold in the market. However, you’ll need to be aware that only a handful of these brands/models will be able to provide you with accurate measurement of BAC and we will suggest that you should only purchase your breathalyzer from a reliable company/brand.

  1. Which type of Breathalyzer should I get?

For most people, you won’t need a spectrophotometer type breathalyzer and you probably won’t be able to purchase one off the shelf anyway. So, that left us with the Semiconductor and the Fuel cell type breathalyzer to consider.

Between these 2 types of breathalyzers, this is how we will usually recommend customer:

i. Semiconductor Breathalyzer: Recommended for personal usage and for use in workplace where you need to conduct alcohol test on workers who need to drive or operate machinery.

ii. Fuel Cell Breathalyzer: Recommended for personal usage (if you have a higher budget), for law enforcement and in scenario where you need very precise measurement of the level of BAC in a person.

  1. Why should I buy my breathalyzer from Unitech Supplies?

If you are going to purchase a breathalyzer, you will want to make sure that the measurements provided by the breathalyzer are accurate and reliable.

Both the Alcoscan AL6000 breathalyzer and AL7000 breathalyzer that we supply are manufactured in Korea under the strictest quality control. They have also acquired various international certificates** and approvals by relevant authorities, so, you can rest assured that their precision, durability and designs meet the highest standards in the market.

  1. Bonus: Some Tips for using a Breathalyzer

i. For hygiene purpose, if you are sharing a breathalyzer with others, please change the disposable mouthpiece whenever someone else is using the breathalyzer.

ii. Wait for around 20 minutes after your last drink before doing the test as the alcohol needs to be absorbed into the bloodstream before it can be detected by the breathalyzer.

iii. Make sure you mouth is clear from contaminants (eg, smoke, food and liquids) as this will affect the reading of the breathalyzer and could possibly damage the breathalyzer as well.

iv. For semiconductor breathalyzer, if you need to recalibrate the breathalyzer, you can just simply do so by purchasing and installing a pre-calibrated modular sensor.

v. Breathalyzer measurements are only meant to be used as a guide – if you need to measure your true BAC, it can only be done through blood test.

vi. Regardless of the readings from the Breathalyzer, there is no safe amount of alcohol to drink before driving – so, if you drink, don’t drive.

* BAC is most commonly used as a metric of intoxication for legal or medical purposes, and it’s usually measured as mass per volume. For example, a BAC of 0.05% means 0.05 grams of alcohol per 100 grams of a person’s blood, or 0.5 grams of alcohol per 1000 grams of blood.

** Certs that Alcoscan AL7000 has acquired: CE, DOT

**Certs that Alcoscan AL6000 has acquired: CE, FDA 510K listed, DOT, Australian Standard