Do I Have to put a Breathalyzer in my Car if I get a DUI in South Florida? DUI Lawyer Explains Ignition Interlock Devices

a glass of alcohol, maybe whisky, sits on the counter of a fort lauderdale, Florida, kitchen with a set of car keys If it’s your first DUI conviction in Florida, you might have to get a breathalyzer in your car - but maybe not. If it’s your second, third or fourth DUI conviction in Florida, you will definitely be getting a  breathalyzer installed in your car.

If you were just convicted for your first DUI charge in Florida and if you blew less than a 0.150 on the breathalyzer - or refused the breathalyzer test - then you most likely will not need to get a breathalyzer or an ignition interlock device installed in your car. 

If it is your first Florida DUI (Driving Under the Influence) Charge, but you consented to a breathalyzer test during your DUI and your blood alcohol content was above 0.150, then you will be required to install the breathalyzer or ignition interlock device on your car for 6 months if you’re convicted of the DUI.  

If it’s your second DUI conviction in Florida - you will be required to get a breathalyzer / ignition interlock device installed in your car. Depending on the circumstances of your Florida DUI case, you will likely need to have the device installed for either 1 or 2 years.  You can learn more about DUI consequences, including more about ignition interlock devices, on our DUI penalty page.

What is an ignition interlock device? 

Ignition interlock devices are mechanical devices that attach to a car to ensure that the driver hasn’t been drinking alcohol before driving. 

Before the vehicle's motor can be started, the driver must first give a breath sample by breathing into the device. If the results show that the driver has alcohol on his or her breath, the device prevents the engine from being started - therefore, it will not allow you to drive while intoxicated.

Ignition Interlock requirements for Florida DUI convictions

  • First DUI Conviction:  An ignition interlock / breathalyzer can be required on any DUI if it is court ordered. Realistically, you will likely not be ordered to install one if you refused a breath test, or if your BAC was below 0.15. 
  • First DUI Conviction with BAC above 0.15, or if a minor is in the car:   If you gave a breath test and your BAC was .15 or higher, or if you had a minor in the car at the time of the offense - the driver must use an interlock for at least six months.
  • Second DUI Conviction: An ignition interlock is required for a minimum of 1 year for a BAC below 0.15. If BAC was 0.15 or higher, or a minor was in the car - the driver will have an ignition interlock / breathalyzer for at least 2 years.
  • Third DUI Conviction: Driver will have a minimum of 2 years using an ignition interlock system.
  • Fourth DUI Conviction: At least 5 years of using an ignition interlock system for the driver. 

If you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Florida, get our FREE booklet (instant download!) to learn the “ 7 Rules you need to Survive a Florida DUI “. You can also call our office to schedule a free consultation. 

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