People are strange.  They wouldn’t scrimp on the quality of the brakes on their cars, or hesitate to replace a bald tyre, because they know the results could be catastrophic.  But when it comes to buying a device that could help save a life (if it means a taxi home instead of ‘risking it’) – they baulk.

There is generally a very good reason why some detectors are so cheap – they are made in China or Korea using cheap parts and labour, where quantity and turnover over-rides quality and assurance.  They have no certification – it would cost too much to even put them through the process, not that they would pass the UK’s stringent checks anyway.

If you can, it’s best to aim high.  These would be my top 3 recommended devices for the Personal User:

In 3rd place, the AlcoHawk Pro.

Top of the range semi-conductor, comes in a hard case with 12v adaptor.

With careful use and regular service, expect a life of approximately 24 months.

Next up – the PT500.

Entry level Fuel Cell device, gives readings in 4 types of units, although NOT the UK Police Standard of microgrammes.

Careful use and regular calibrations should give a life of about 24-36 months.

And finally…

The AlcoDigital 3000.

Uses the same fuel cell sensor and casing as the Police Approved Draeger 6510.

Gives readings in microgrammes per 100ml (the UK Police Standard).

Average life span will equal that of the 6510 – we’ve had one in our workshops since 2003, and it’s still going strong after 4000 tests.

And it comes with a 2 year guarantee.


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