Breathalyser Buying Guide

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Buying a breathalyser online? It pays to know what you’re getting.  

When you’re buying a breathalyser online, it’s important to know about the different types of breathalysers and what they can do for you.

First, make sure the breathalyser meets these important criteria: 

  • It meets required Australian Standards AS 3547 (for personal use, including workplace and/or parties) and comes with written certification.
  • DO NOT buy a breathalyser that doesn’t come with technical information or AS 3547 certification. Not only you are wasting money, but also you’re under a false sense of security – which is more harmful than not owning a breathalyser in the first place.
  • Has a high accuracy in a controlled environment as per AS3547
  • Alcohol breathalyser sensors need to be recalibrated regularly so make sure that your breathalyser is able to be recalibrated and comes with a lifetime warranty (or replacement). For example, if you drop it, blow a high reading, contaminate it, or damage it for ANY reason, you should be able to replace it. We offer a replacement service at just $55.00 (cost of calibration) and you can trade in your old unit for a BRAND NEW one at any time for life.
  • It comes with educational information about your Blood Alcohol Level (BAC). No alcohol breathalyser is never perfect! That’s why we include a Know Your Limit BAC Chart Pocket Guide to help you work out your BAC reading with or without a breathalyser.

Which type of breathalyser do you need? Semiconductor or Fuel Cell?

There are two different types of alcohol breathalysers and sensors:

Semiconductor-type Breathalysers

The semiconductor-type of breathalyser works by creating an internal reaction of ethyl alcohol exhaled by the test subject into acetic acid and water, which can generate an electric current. The amount of current generated is proportional to the level of person’s blood alcohol.

However, other substances as well as the vulnerability of the sensor may result in loss of accuracy. Semiconductor breathalysers are ideal for screening BAC and not suitable for providing evidence to a court.

Fuel Cell-type Breathalysers

Fuel cell breathalysers have two platinum electrodes inside the sensor, with an electrolyte material between them. As the ethyl alcohol passes through them, the platinum oxidizes it into acetic acid, protons and electrons; the electrons generate a current and that current is measured.

Fuel cell breathalyser sensors are known to be more accurate than semiconductor-type breathalysershowever, they still should not to be used in a court of law.

How much will your breathalyser cost?

Semiconductor breathalyser models start at around $99.00, and range up to several hundred dollars.

Fuel cell alcohol breathalysers start at $190.00 and range up to a couple of thousand dollars for law enforcement models.

Buy personal breathalysers and car Interlock devices online:

When you take a driver education course with us you’re also eligible for special offers and discounts on personal breathalysers, car Interlock devices and educational materials. Browse our online shop here

Got a question about breathalysers?

Please call us directly on 03 9846 3674 or send us an email enquiry.