Alcohol Testers

Breath Alcohol breathalyser 0.05%BAC

Breath alcohol testers

Screening for alcohol levels is now easier than ever. There are a complete range of single use testing kits which will allow instant screening to either a pre set cut off level or even give a semi quantitive indicator of the detected level.

The biotechnology in these tests is now well tested and most come with a full set of quality certification, ensuring a high level of accuracy if used to the manufacturers guidelines.

Most instant tests are actually set to Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) cut off levels. This can seem a little confusing when you are running a test on either saliva or breath, but with all the legislation referenced to BAC this actually makes sense. It also makes changing from saliva to breath screening a lot simpler, eliminating the need to cross reference different scales of measurement.

So what is available in todays market. Lets first look at the options for single use breath alcohol testers. All contain a chemical crystal, which on exposure to alcohol changes colour. By altering the chemical, this colour change can be made to occur only when a predetermined level of alcohol is reached. This makes it possible to set UK HSE breath alcohol testers to give positive results at alcohol levels of 0.02%BAC Scottish and French (EU) driving level cut of alcohol testers at alcohol levels of 0.05%BAC and UK England & Wales driving limit alcohol testers at alcohol levels of 0.08%BAC All three options are also available in triple test packs and double test packs with blow bags.

By altering the chemical slightly it is also possible to make it change colour to a greater degree at higher alcohol exposure levels. This makes it possible to turn the alcohol tester from a simple cut off positive or negative test, into a semi quantitive breath alcohol test. The darker the shade of colour change, the higher the alcohol level detected. By reading the colour change showing at a set time these alcohol testers give a guide to the actual blood alcohol level at the time of testing.

Breath testing is easy, cheap and reliable. All these alcohol testers are single use disposable test kits. Expiry dates are normally 24-36 months and storage is normally at room temperature with no special requirements. Two, ten second blows are needed to get an accurate reading. In donors with poor lung function, asthma, bronchitis etc this may render the test useless, so an option for these tests would be a saliva test strip alcohol tester.

Alcohol saliva testing is as simple and reliable as saliva drug testing, and indeed an ever increasing range of saliva drug tests do incorporate a saliva alcohol test strip with a 0.02%BAC sensitivity for workplace HSE screening.

The biotechnology is similar to the chemical breathalyser reaction with a colour change on a pad to which the saliva is added. The colour change is compared to a reference colour chart and the best match selected to give a semi quantitive alcohol level.

Both single use chemical breathalyser alcohol testers and saliva alcohol test strips are suitable for healthcare and workplace alcohol screening. Backed up with a digital breathalyser, these screens offer flexible, multi-location screening ability within a site or business. All test results are screening only, non evidential and all non negative results for alcohol should be confirmed using an accredited laboratory service offering evidential and chain of custody controlled certified results.

Breathalyser Manufacturers Rush for NF Certification For New French Breathalyzer Law

A massive rush is underway by breathalyzer manufacturers applying for NF certification of their products. The NF standard is a basic quality mark which until recently has been of limited interest to manufacturers. Many had let their NF certificates lapse as the French market was not considered important and the quality mark was not required to sell in France where the usual ROHS or CE certification was also accepted.

The move by the French Government to introduce compulsary breathalyzer packs for all motorists using french roads from July 2012 has seen a large increase in sales to the French market. At the time of the decision only a few brands had pre-existing NF certificates applied to their products. Obtaining NF certificate listing is quite straight forward for manufacturers already meeting existing EU quality standards there are no additional parameters which are required and it is simply a matter of completing the LNE audit and application process.

We will see a massive expansion to the list of approved NF breathalyzers over the next few months. The existing list is in no way final or closed and many manufactuers are also obtaining a declaration of conformity to the performance standards listed in NFX20702, making their products legitimate to sell directly into the French market.

The same application process applies to digital hand held breathalyzers being sold to the french Breathalyzer market for compliance with the new law. Many of the existing models such as the DA8000 and others have existing NF certification but only applied to OEM branded boxes in French distributor own label boxes. The breathalyzers are indentical to the manufacturers original but prior to the new French law the manufacturer saw no commercial advantage to paying for LNE certification directly.

With the introduction of the French breathalyzer legislation this now changes the balance for product being imported into Europe.  Buyers will want breathalyzer models which are compliant for when they travel to Europe and will prevent them having to buy additional units or single use breathalyzer tubes. If other countries follow the French and introduce similar laws, there is nothing to stop them applying a local regional or country specific quality mark .

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Breathalyzer Reviews-Disposable Breathalyzer Kits Review

breathalyzer kits uk france for sale

We tested & reviewed the 0.05% breathlyzer kit from Mission (EU driving level cut off for most although not all EU countries including France) Some of the EU countries operate a zero tolerance so check with the individual country that you are travelling to.

Using the Mission disposable breathalyzer kits is very easy. They are supplied in boxes of 3, 6 or 20 single use breathalyzer kits, and each kit is sealed in a foil pouch.

The breathalyzer kits come with a very detailed set of instructions and data included, but the actual test proceedure is very simple.

Simply remove one of the breathalyzer tubes from its sealed pouch and when you are ready to test, squeeze the central clear section to break the internal crystal tube. The crystals are all a light golden yellow colour. Blow through the tube for 12 seconds, this needs a good breath in before you start.

Dont read the results straight away, the correct result is the one showing 2 minutes after you started blowing. If the result is positive and above the alcohol cut off for the test the crystals will have changed colour to a pale green/grey or blue/grey colour. The colour is not strong or dark but quite distinct from the starting golden yellow. In negative tests the crystals will remain golden yellow.

There is no colour chart provided, so we found it helpful to compare the positive results against an un-used breathalyzer test kit, but this did mean we had to open a second test to use as the comparison, but if you are doing the test regularly this will not be needed.

What we liked about the test kit:

  • its very small, lightweight & discrete and would fit easily in a handbag, glove box or even your pocket
  • it was very easy to use
  • it came in a box of 3
  • it gave a result quickly & accurately
  • easily disposed of after use

Click here for disposable breathalyzer kits for sale in UK including one for use when travelling abroad in France

For Wholesale enquiries on Breathalyzer Kits  e-mail or telephone 01263 731 168 during office hours or visit our website Valuebreathalysers wholesale pages

Using a Home Breathalyzer- FAQs

What is the UK drink driving legal limt currently ?

Blood Alcohol Concentrations (BAC) – 80 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres, 80mg/ml, 080 on mg/100ml display or 0.08 %BAC, 0.8 Promille

Breath Alcohol Concentrations (BrAC) – 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath BrAC

What is the best buy for home breathalyser use ?

Higher price does not always mean higher accuracy, as the expensive breathalyser models are designed to be serviced regularly to maintain their accuracy and don’t have on board self diagnostics.

Here are some key points to consider when buying a DIY digital breathalyser:

1) Insist on interchangeable sensors – without this you are tied to sending the breathalyser regularly to a service centre for calibration services.

2) The breathalyser must have selectivity of no less than +/-0.01% BAC which is the same as +/- 10mg/100ml BAC. (avoid units with +/-0.02% and over)

3) Choose your display scale and stick to it, most digital breathalysers either display as %BAC or mg/100ml BAC  (BAC=Blood Alcohol Concentration) don’t confuse this with BrAC .(Breath Alcohol Concentration) which is available but rarer.

4) Be realistic, under £25 and you are getting a novelty device which you should not rely upon. Expect to pay £35-£70 for a digital breathalyser which will work well, give reliable readings, cost £15-20 to replace the sensor (every 300 tests or 6 monthly)

Can I rely on the results when choosing to drive ?

No. Breathalysers should not be used to test your ability to drive legally, as a breathalyser will measure only your current blood alcohol levels. These can rise after testing if the unit is being used immeditaely after drinking. Breathalysers should be used the morning after to confirm that alcohol has left the body.

Visit Value Breathalysers UK to see a range of breathalyser suitable for home use