Find information on California Ignition Interlock device’s.  The miniature breathalyzers installed in vehicles to test blood alcohol before and during operation. These devices have become popular in recent years for drivers that have received a DUI violation.

How Do Ignition Interlock Device’s Work?

Before you start your car, you must blow into the interlock and provide an alcohol-free breath sample.  If you don’t, your vehicle will not start.  Once you are driving, the interlock will ask for random samples, between 5-15 minutes after you start driving and then every 45 minutes thereafter. When the instrument asks for these “rolling” samples, you have six minutes to provide a sample giving you plenty of time to pull over. If you don’t “pass”, your ignition interlock device will not disable your car. The interlock will register a “fail” on your log that gets reported to the court.

California ignition interlock devices are designed to ensure that only you will provide a breath sample. This is done by:

  • Requiring a specific breath pattern for the sample
  • A short cord that cannot reach to the passenger or back seats
  • requiring random samples, while driving
  • making it a crime to ask someone else to provide his/her sample instead of yours.

The technology of California ignition interlocks is so advanced that it detects and records:

  • attempts to disconnect or tamper with the device
  • all engine starts and stops
  • all breath test results

The California interlock must be taken in for servicing at least every 60 days.

Who Is Required To Have Ignition Interlock Devices In California?

A California Superior Court judge CAN order a ignition interlock at his or her discretion for the following violations,

  • First offense DUI code 23152(a) driving under the influence.
  • Refusing to submit to a blood or chemical test
  • First offense DUI code 23152(b) driving under the influence with blood alcohol above 0.08% or greater
  • Multiple driving on a suspended license 14601 vehicle code resulting from a DUI conviction

A California Superior Court Judge WILL order a ignition interlock for the following violations,

  • Repeat offenders of driving under the influence DUI code 23152(a)
  • DUI with bodily injury vehicle code 23153

How Long Will The Interlock Be Required?

  • Length of time that a first-time DUI defendant may be required to keep an ignition interlock in their car following conviction is usually 6 months. If there is no conviction but is found liable by the DMV, the mandatory period for having an interlock is usually 4 months.
  • Repeat DUI offenders  will be required to have the interlock device as follows,
  • 1 year requirement for a second DUI conviction
  • 2 year requirement for a third DUI conviction
  • 3 years for a fourth DUI violation and any subsequent conviction

Who Installs and Services Ignition Interlocks

Other Possible Requirements In Addition To A Ignition Interlock After a DUI.

The California DMV and courts can also impose the following sanctions against you if you are convicted for a DUI.