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5 Best Breathalyzers For Testing Alcohol Level

Best Home Breathalyzers

A home breathalyzer for personal use is technology every driver should own, especially if they enjoy a drink or two the night before. At no point whatsoever you should drive your car whilst intoxicated.

The best personal breathalyzer is the BACtrack S80 Professional Breathalyzer that includes a police grade level of accuracy and many features.

There are so many factors that determine your alcohol tolerance from weight, gender, age, metabolism and so much more. Your blood alcohol content can be measured through the use of an informative alcohol breathalyzer.

Table of Contents

Best Professional Personal Breathalyzer

BreathalyzersAccuracyOur Rating
BACtrack S800.000 to 0.400%4.9
AlcoTrace Breathalyzer+/-0.0014.8
AlcoHAWK PT5000.000 to 0.400%4.8
BACtrack KeychainN/A4.7
AlcoMate Revo TS200+/-0.0054.7

Breathalyzers are easy to use and relatively inexpensive considering it could stop you driving your car. If you use it and notice your blood alcohol content (BAC) reading is too high, it could prevent you causing injury to someone, damage, your drivers license and a lot of fines.

With technological advances coming into play, there are now many smartphone breathalyzers that provide more features from tracking to estimates of 0% readings.

In terms of the types of breathalyzer, there are several from the personal use to the ones the police use. Below is a list of the best personal breathalyzers for reading blood alcohol content readings to indicate if you are safe to drive or not.

BACtrack S80 Professional Breathalyzer

The BACTrack S80 is an approved breathalyzer by the U.S. Department of Transportation that offers an accurate reading every time. It is a compact device that is highly portable and easy to use that comes with replacement mouthpieces for hygiene and increased accuracy.

You shouldn’t use a breathalyzer to tell you whether you are fit to drive or not. It should be used as a deterrent not to drive and for this, you want the most accurate reading possible and this is exactly what the BACTrack S80 does.

It uses the fuel cell sensor technology and requires just one button to activate the blood alcohol test with results in 10 seconds. There are further advanced features from continuous temperature checking and internal pump systems for breath capture.

BACTrack have been within the breathalyzer game for over 14 years and they are known for reliability. The S80 comes with a 1 year warranty and is small enough to be stored in the car or away in the cupboard.

Overall, the S80 is the best personal breathalyzer that does not require a smartphone for results. It is pricey but the accuracy is highly rated and worth paying the extra for.

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AlcoTrace Breathalyzer Professional Breathalyzer

The main competitor to the BacTrack S80 is the AlcoTrace with its accuracy ratings and high quality construction. A clever feature of the AlcoTrace comes from the mouthpieces that are designed to provide no backwash after use.

If you have just had a drink, you must wait at least 20 minutes for accurate results and the result will be returned within seconds. It uses fuel cell technology that is essential for all adults from the age of 21.

The AlcoTrace is a premium breathalyzer that is as accurate to what the police are using. They provide a 60 day money back guarantee but with the large 4 digit LCD screen and simple to use functionality, you will not be returning it. It is the most accurate breathalyzer without paying over the odds for.

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AlcoHAWK PT500 Alcohol Detector

The AlcoHawk is a fuel cell sensor breathalyzer designed for accuracy and provides a test range of 0.000 to 0.400% BAC. If you are over the blood alcohol content limit, there are both audible and visual warnings as a further deterrent.

The police use fuel cell sensors in their breathalyzers and so should you. The performance of this device has been calibrated by USA calibrations and quality assurance as well as being tested by the department of transportation.

The AlcoHAWK PT500 is a proven breathalyzer that works and the manufacturers also offer cheap mouthpieces unlike many other competitors.

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BACtrack Keychain Breathalyzer

If the above breathalyzers are too steep for your budget, then BACTrack offer a cheaper alternative that you can trust. You will notice that many cheap breathalyzer are poorly rated but the BACtrack alternative has the backing off the reputable brand.

The main difference (apart from the price) is the small design that easily fits in your pocket and can be attached to a key chain. The battery will be able to handle up to 150 tests and before use, it requires a 11 to 13 second warm up.

As the price has decreased, so does the accuracy because it is using a cheaper sensor compared with the premium models. However, the accuracy is still okay for testing and using this breathalyzer as a deterrent. It is by far the best cheap breathalyzer for the money and you will not be disappointed.

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AlcoMate Revo TS200 Professional

The AlcoMate is the most expensive with this article but it is a true professional breathalyzer, which is highly rated for accuracy and does not need any manual re-calibration. The Prism technology provide an accuracy rating of  +/-0.005 at 0.10 g/dl.

All breathalyzers require a sensor change at some point. Many cheap models will be virtually impossible to replace without breaking it but not this one. It is an easy switch as it simply pops out and you switch to a new one.

The price is expensive but this is due to the Prism technology, which is Department of Transportation approved as well as being used by the US navy. Overall, it is one of the top breathalyzers but the majority of people will purchase the BACtrack S80 purely because of the pricing.

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Breathalyzer Buying Guide

The market for breathalyzers has become much more saturated with a range available. Increasing your knowledge before you buy will ensure you buy the best breathalyzer for the money and what works for you.

There are many factors to consider and what you will use it for. For example many people will want to own one so that it acts as a deterrent before you get in the car in the morning after a boozy night. However, some people will simply like to keep updated to beat their anxiety or even as a game with their friends.

Types of Breathalyzers

In short, there are three different types of devices you can buy that include fuel cell sensor, semiconductor sensor and disposable units. The differences are usually found within the prices, designs and of course the accuracy.

The fuel cell sensor is the most accurate form of sensor found within the best breathalyzers. It measures the concentration of alcohol molecules per use and is only found with premium models. They will need re-calibration within a years of use but this is a small price to pay for top accuracy.

Semiconductor sensors are much smaller in size and have a medium degree of accuracy and are much cheaper. However, if budget is the most important factor, the disposable unit is the best buy but accuracy will not be what you would think.

Mouthpiece Hygiene

Nobody likes to spread germs even if is your friends or family. Between tests, you should switch between mouthpieces for better accuracy and hygiene. It is very easy to cross contaminate when someone has used the device before you have.

Mouthpieces are fairly cheap and it is better to buy in bulk than use old dirty ones at a later point.

Should You Rely on a Breathalyzer

All of the recommended breathalyzers mention within this article are very accurate and dependable. However, they will not provide the accuracy of what the police will use because these usually cost 5 figures.

Use these personal breathalyzers purely as a deterrent to stop you drink driving.


Buy cheap, buy twice is a phrase that states what will happen if you go for an ultra cheap breathalyzer. The less you pay, the less accurate the device will be and not to mention the quality of the sensor that it will be using.

procarreviews author

Written By Dan

About the Author

Dan is an automotive journalist and owner of over 10 cars ranging from supercars, tuned cars, classics and your good old beater cars. He always likes to get his hands dirty with nut and bolt restorations or detailing sessions using the best products on the market.

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