Breathalyzer Test Price: Contributing Factors
07 September, 2023
Breathalyzers have become increasingly in demand due to their ability to quickly and accurately measure the presence of alcohol. They are portable devices that can be used for personal, roadside, and workplace use. Moreover, the breathalyzer test price varies with their level of accuracy and features. It also largely depends on the kind of sensors used. Typically, personal devices are more affordable than professional-grade devices. However, they work just as well as professional breathalyzers.
Excessive consumption of alcohol often leads to severe impairments. Individuals with high alcohol levels increase the risk of getting into road accidents. Thus, many use a personal breathalyzer to keep their Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) from exceeding the legal limit. As such, there are many types of devices that individuals can choose from. In this article, we will explore the factors that contribute to the prices of breath testing devices.
Breathalyzer Test Price – Accuracy of Results
The breathalyzer test prices can vary greatly according to their accuracy levels. Generally, the more accurate the device, the higher the price. This is because accurate breathalyzers usually incorporate advanced technology and sensors to provide more precise readings. These breathalyzers undergo rigorous testing and calibration processes to ensure optimal performance.
The reliability of the breathalyzer is important in making decisions. Nevertheless, many cheaper breathalyzers provide reasonably accurate readings. These devices are suitable for personal use or general estimations of the BAC. There are also personal breathalyzers that use police-grade alcohol sensors. Thus, consumers who need an accurate device do not need to get expensive breathalyzers that police use. However, investing in a high-quality device is recommended.
Furthermore, law enforcement and workplaces use professional-grade devices with the most advanced fuel cell technology. This sensor type delivers accurate readings over the complete range of alcohol expected in the breath. Hence, it can trace and measure the BAC accurately at lower levels. Ultimately, choosing a device would depend on the accuracy and testing needs of a person.
Types of Technology Used
- Fuel cell technology: it measures the alcohol content in a person’s breath by oxidising it through a chemical reaction. It provides a high degree of precision and consistency. Fuel cell sensors are also not reactive to other substances.
- Semiconductor sensor: it works by reacting to alcohol molecules in the breath using a tin-oxide sensor. When alcohol is present, it causes a change in the electrical resistance of the sensor, which is then measured into a BAC.
- Infrared spectroscopy: it emits infrared light through the breath sample, measuring the absorption of light by alcohol molecules. It is the technology used in evidentiary devices in police stations.
Breathalyzer Test Price – Disposable or Long-Term Use
Another factor that affects the breathalyzer test price is the type of device according to its use. Disposable breathalyzers are single-use devices and are more affordable. They only require the user to blow into a tube and discard it after use. Instead of sensors, they use crystals that change colours based on the BAC range of the breath alcohol content.
Disposable breathalyzers are suitable for one-off situations such as parties or events. On the other hand, long-term breathalyzers are reusable. They are electronic devices with a digital display that shows the BAC levels after the test. These devices require batteries to operate. Some may use disposable batteries, while others are rechargeable.
Reusable breathalyzers are suitable for frequent testing. It allows multiple retests to monitor the BAC more efficiently. Moreover, additional features affect the cost of these devices. For example, some breathalyzers have Bluetooth connectivity to pair with a smartphone. It offers data storage, tracking, and sobriety monitoring. Overall, the prices of disposable and reusable alcohol testers vary greatly. However, reusable devices are more cost-efficient for long-term use.
Recalibration Period For Reusable Devices
Reusable breathalyzers require regular recalibration due to the sensors drifting over time. The period or frequency of recalibration depends on the type of sensor and the number of uses. Some devices may need servicing every six months, while others every 12 months. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for recalibration.
Periodic recalibration helps maintain the accuracy of the device, ensuring that it continues to provide consistent results. A professional alcohol tester requires sending the unit back to the manufacturer or certified calibration laboratory. Therefore, it minimises the possibility of false positives and expands their lifespan.
Breathalyzer Test Price – Personal or Workplace Use
Breath alcohol testers are mainly classified into personal and professional types. The breathalyzer test prices would depend on their features and sensors. A personal device may use a semiconductor sensor, which is generally cheaper than fuel cell sensors. However, there are also many personal breathalyzers that use professional-grade fuel cell sensors. An example of this is the BACtrack S80 from Breathalysers New Zealand.
On the other hand, workplaces use advanced fuel cell technology. They are generally more expensive but provide higher accuracy and consistency. These devices meet the legal standards and technical credentials for reliable breath alcohol screening. Furthermore, they contain more functions, such as wide storage capability and downloadable reporting features.
There are several types of workplace breathalyzers. Devices like the SHIELD Express Identity have optional testing modes. It includes passive screening and active testing. The passive test detects alcohol in the breath, regardless of the amount. This enables workplaces to screen a large number of people quickly. It also allows them to save costs on mouthpiece use.
Regulations And Certifications
When purchasing a breathalyzer, it is vital to check for its regulatory compliance. Not all devices have certifications. However, using a certified device helps ensure the reliability of the results. Devices with DOT compliance or FDA approval entail that they meet the set guidelines and standards for precision and accuracy.
Moreover, a workplace breath alcohol tester in New Zealand adheres to AS3547:2019. This international testing standard sets specific requirements for the performance and recalibration of reusable devices. Companies use AS3547-compliant units to ensure they get reliable breath alcohol data. Individuals who need frequent alcohol testing may also get this device for personal use.
The breathalyzer test price varies with the accuracy, reusability, and type of device. Portable alcohol testers may use semiconductor or fuel cell sensors. For quick alcohol screening or personal use, a semiconductor breathalyzer is sufficient. Meanwhile, a fuel cell breathalyzer delivers higher accuracy due to specificity to ethyl alcohol. Other factors include disposable and reusable devices. A disposable breathalyzer is good for single use. It is cheaper, but it may need constant purchases to test for alcohol.
In contrast, reusable breathalyzers are more expensive due to the technology used. They also allow multiple testing, which is more cost-efficient. Additionally, workplaces use police-grade fuel cell sensors to comply with AS3547. They also come with advanced features for enhanced data storage and testing modes. In conclusion, breathalyzers vary in cost due to their accuracy and functions. Investing in a reliable device can help enhance personal and public safety.