HomeUIC Research Journalvol. 21 no. 1 (2015)

Comparison of the Blood Alcohol Concentration Readings from the Improvised Low-Cost and Commercial Breath Analyzers

Renan P. Limjuco | Avee Joy B. Dayaganon | Mary Jane G. Barluado | Norilyn Joy M. Torcuator | Althea C. Alcampado | Rhemegen S. Gevero | Ann Lucile D. Mar | Shyra Ericka S. Tortor | Margaret Ivy Utrera



Increase in alcohol related injuries and accidents call for stricter implementation of anti-alcohol laws, which depends on consistent monitoring of public alcohol drinking. In this study, an improvised low-cost device that can be used to determine blood alcohol concentration (BAC) by detecting alcohol in a person’s breath was developed. The BAC readings of 19 volunteer participants obtained using the improvised device, a commercial breathalyzer, and by blood laboratory analysis were compared. The participants were asked to drink 132 ml of tequila (80 Proof) and blow their breaths to both the commercial breathalyzer and the improvised breath analyzer after 20 minutes. At the same time, samples of their blood were collected for BAC laboratory analysis. The results gave mean values of 0.046%, 0.039% and 0.021% obtained by laboratory testing, improvised, and commercial devices, respectively, showing that the improvised breath analyzer BAC readings are closer to the laboratory result than the commercial breathalyzer readings are. There is significant difference between the BAC readings obtained with the commercial and improvised devises, which could be because the two devices employ different principles. Further tests and innovations on the improvised device must be done before it can be presented as alternative blood alcohol monitoring device.