What is a Breathalyzer Test?

Wisconsin Criminal Law Blog

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determining the presence or quantity in his or her blood or breath, of alcohol…”

That means you have already given your consent to a breath or blood test.


The police can ask you to take a preliminary breath test, which they can use as evidence to arrest you for operating while intoxicated, when they pull you over under suspicion of OWI. If you refuse the breath test, you can still be arrested – and police can test your blood for the presence of alcohol if you’re arrested.


If you refuse chemical testing (breath or blood) after an OWI arrest, the state can:

  • Revoke your driver’s license
  • Require you to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle (and if you own more than one vehicle, you may have to install more than one)
  • Require you to participate in an alcohol assessment

Can You Trick a Breathalyzer Test?

No matter what you’ve heard, it’s impossible to “trick” a breath-alcohol test. Some common myths include:

  • You can trick a Breathalyzer by sucking on a penny
  • You can beat a breath test by using mints or mouthwash
  • Breath tests have a hard time detecting alcohol if you smoke
  • Breath tests are 100 percent accurate

Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About an OWI Charge in Wisconsin?

If you’ve been arrested for drunk driving, we may be able to help you. Call us at 414-383-6700 or 262-650-6700 – we want to talk to you whether you submitted to a breath test or you were given a blood test after your arrest, or if neither occurred. We’ll be happy to review your OWI case free and answer your questions right now.

Carlos Gamino

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What is a Breathalyzer Test - Carlos Gamino
By Carlos Gamino

When police pull you over because they suspect you’ve been drinking and driving, they may ask you to take a Breathalyzer test.

It’s important that you know the state of Wisconsin has an implied consent law that says, “Any person who… drives or operates a motor vehicle upon the public highways of this state… is deemed to have given consent to one or more tests of his or her breath, blood or urine, for the purpose of
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