Today’s digital breathalysers are calibrated at the factory to guarantee that the sensors provide accurate readings. Eventually, alcohol and other pollutants in the environment affect the settings and ultimately reduce the accuracy of the readings.
Breathalyzers that have sensors that are fixed need to be returned to a service centre to get re-calibrated. Breathalyzers that have sensors that are replaceable, like the AL6000 breathalyser, are automatically reset to the original factory settings when the sensor module is replaced.
For what length of time will the breathalyser sensing unit retain its accuracy and reliability?
When the sensor is used normally, around 250-300 tests, it will retain its accuracy for a minimum of 12 months.
The sensor will lose its accuracy depending on the following factors:
- Subjection to intense temperature (glove box in hot months)
- Exposure to severe cold (glove box in winter time)
- Contact with excessive amounts of alcohol in breathing samples
- Not ventilating the sensor following use with moisture build-up (oxidation)
- Subjection to tar in samples of those who smoke
If it is vital to have readings that are accurate, replace the sensor after around 200 tests or 6 months.
What tests can I perform to ensure that the breathalyser sensor is providing accurate readings?
Not sure of the age of your sensor or if it was stored properly? Do a series of 3 tests with a positive breath sample within a 5 minute time period. If a good sampling technique varies by more than +/- 10%, it is time for the sensor to be changed.