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Can a Breathalyzer Be Tricked?

There’s something about having a couple of drinks, getting behind the wheel because you feel “fine,” and then having a cop driving behind you. Suddenly, your nerves are rattled, your heart races, and you’re nervously looking around your car for something that can remove the smell of alcohol from your breath.

If you’re lucky, that something that will skew the breathalyzer’s results should that cop driving behind you get suspicious, pull you over, and ask you to take a breath test.

Then, your worst fears are realized. All of a sudden, the cop’s lights go on and you’re being pulled over. Now your mind is racing. Can the nachos you had at the bar help you beat the breathalyzer test? Should you have had coffee before you hit the road?

Should you have had an energy drink with alcohol instead of half a dozen drinks with rum and coke? Should you rifle through your center console and suck on a penny before the cop makes his way to your driver’s side window? Should you quickly swig some mouthwash and swallow it?

Breathalyzer Myths Exposed

It’s very common for drivers to ask themselves the above questions during a routine DUI stop. In order to answer some of these questions, we’re going to shed some light on these breathalyzer cheats and why they actually don’t work!

  • Sorry, but eating will not help anyone beat a breathalyzer test. While you may be able to “mask” the smell of alcohol with mints or food, they won’t trick a breathalyzer test.
  • Coffee may make you a “wide awake” drunk, but it will not help lower BAC; only time can do that.
  • Mouthwash, gum and breath spray may mask the smell of alcohol on your breath, but they will not help reduce your BAC reading. Beware of substances like mouthwash with alcohol, which can actually increase your BAC – the opposite of what you want!
  • If you drink Nyquil for a cold, it can actually set off a breathalyzer because it contains alcohol.
  • Sucking on a penny or any other change will NOT lower your BAC reading – that is a myth. Besides, if an officer finds you sucking on change, he or she will probably think that you’re hiding something.
  • If you heard that holding a 9 Volt battery on your tongue could fool a breathalyzer, you heard wrong. Sorry again!

Looking for an Orange County DUI lawyer to fight your alcohol or drug-related DUI charges? Call the DUI Queen for a free case evaluation!