Things to know about vaping and the breathalyser test

3 min readFeb 8, 2019

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Rumour has it that vaping might get you in trouble by making you fail the breathalyser test if being pulled over by the police. But let’s find out where the roots come from before jumping to any conclusion.

While digging up on the Internet, we found these concerns to be widely spread among popular forums. What it looks like is that the discussions have started after a study performed by Yale University back at the beginning of 2016. The research had an aim to investigate the alcohol contained in e-juice with its properties to affect motor skills.

They investigated 2 types of e-liquids containing 23,5% and 0,4% of alcohol. The participants had to be sober for 48h and not use any nicotine for 12h. The experiment ran in a controlled environment with blood, urine and breath tests taken afterwards. The urine and breathalyser analyses detected alcohol use after puffing the 23,5% e-juice. The issue with this data is that there wasn’t specified whether the BAC level was above the legal limit or not. As well, it should be added that most e-liquids include only PG and VG from the alcohol family. These components are found in cosmetics as well as food, but it isn’t your typical ethanol contained in spirits. The juices with alcohol content were bought from KAI’s Virgin Vapor. Here is what the CEO of this company mentioned on this topic:

‘When we first started our company in 2010, the only flavours available that were suitable for use in e-liquid were ones extracted using organic ethyl alcohol. Since that time we have developed new and better flavours that don’t require organic ethyl alcohol as an extraction method. We prefer flavours that do not contain organic ethyl alcohol because we look to create a product with as few ingredients as possible.’

Technically, there is still no scientifically studied proof that vaping your usual vape e-liquid may get you in trouble. As well, there are too many things which can give a false positive on the breathalyser. In case a mouthwash or an inhaler for asthma was used, there is a great chance of the device making you fail the test. For this reason, the officers must be informed that you’ve used something of this nature.

When it comes to DIY then it is no secret that out of curiosity people combine different additives to their vape juices or add them in a pure form directly into the tank. It is important to mention that vaping spirits can damage your device not to mention that the effect on your body is unknown.

We advise you to stick to the store bought TPD approved products.

What do you think about this topic? Have you had some false positive results before or maybe made an experiment yourself?



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