What to Expect for the Total Cost and Ramifications for Using an Ignition Interlock Device

Get Your FREE DUI Review
Find Out Your Chance of Conviction, Dismissal or Plea Bargain. Stop License Suspension.

What to Expect for the Total Cost and Ramifications for Using an Ignition Interlock Device

Total Cost and Ramifications for Using an Ignition Interlock Device
Total Cost and Ramifications for Using an Ignition Interlock Device

The total cost of having to use a DUI Ignition Interlock device is one of the toughest consequences of the new laws for a driving under the influence charge. Due to these ramifications today if you are arrested for a drunk or drugged driving offense, most people do whatever they can to have those charges revoked or dropped. Multiple DUI, DWI offenses mean tougher sentencing and drastically more expensive fees can be expected under state Ignition Interlock laws.

Page Menu

In addition to the damage of a personal reputation, car insurance cost increases, and a driver’s license suspension, with an interlock penalty you may find yourself struggling to keep your job or drive a work vehicle with this device installed.

What happens with the cost of using an ignition interlock for a first offense DUI?

A first-time DUI offender with a blood alcohol content over the legal BAC .08, will result in suspended license for an average 6 months to 2 years length of time, along several hours of court-ordered alcohol and drug classes. Since operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol level is over .08 is considered a misdemeanor criminal offense in every state, in addition to the mandatory fines to pay, a license will be suspended upon a conviction or guilty plea. When a license suspension happens for a DUI or DWI, arrest-specific legal motions will provide the best ways how to get your license back after a DUI in any case.

Once a driver does get their license back or is granted a restricted temporary license for school, work, or medical reasons, a mandatory DUI ignition interlock must be installed on any vehicle a person will be operating. It is also important to note this device must also be used in any company car or work vehicle a convicted individual will be operating for their job duties. The minimum time required of having to drive with the car Breathalyzer installed is for one year upon a first DUI or DWI offense conviction.

Drivers subject to using an ignition interlock Breathalyzer are responsible for all installation and maintenance costs for the device. This money adds up to an average total fee to pay of about $1,500 to $2,000 which goes to the service provider during their first year in the IID program. This price amount does not include the previously mentioned costs associated with alcohol or drug-related convictions, such as legal fees, court fines, and higher auto insurance premiums.

In addition to those charges, a person who must use the interlock device for a first offense DUI will also incur the following estimated payments:

  • $37.00 Interlock program application fee
  • $125.54 DMV administrative driver’s license re-instatement charge
  • $352.79 Drug & alcohol education (DUI class) fees

What is the cost to expect of the ignition interlock device for a second DUI or DWI offense within 10 years?

A person who gets convicted or is pleading guilty to a second offense DUI for a blood alcohol content level of over .08 BAC will result in a suspension of the person’s driver’s license for a minimum of 2 years on average, and many more hours of drug and alcohol classes to take than a punishment as a first-time offender. If the blood alcohol content level of a Breathalyzer or blood test results are far above the .08 legal alcohol limit, the length of time for having a suspended license and ignition interlock device can be for a longer period, and a misdemeanor DUI charge could even be upgraded to a felony offense.

A driver with a 2nd DUI or DWI related violation within 10 years can expect a much higher minimum cost of $2,500 to pay in total, since a mandatory ignition lock will be implemented for at least three years after the conviction in court.

What are some of the violations under the ignition interlock requirement that can cause using the device to cost more?

Under today’s DUI and DWI law for using an ignition interlock to drive in every state of the country, it is considered a criminal offense to:

  • Not have the interlock device inspected at least once every 30 to 60 days as the program requires.
  • Having someone else blow into the device to provide a breath sample so you can start the vehicle or keep driving.
  • Tamper with an ignition interlock device, or operate a car in which the machine has been tampered with or altered in some way.
  • Help someone who has an interlock license start their vehicle or keep it moving by blowing into the interlock device for them.
  • Allowing a person who holds an interlock license to operate a vehicle that is not equipped with a car Breathalyzer device.

The cost penalties for an ignition interlock violation start at $500 for a first offense, and can also carry additional criminal charges as well.

Where can I get more help and information on being able to afford having to use the interlock?

For more information about the DUI Ignition Interlock Program or how much it will cost in total for your own case, please call FightDUICharges at (800) 346-9889 or talk to us online if you prefer. If the affordability of an IID installation is a main concern, you can also download the free guide here for additional help on how to get out of a DUI & avoid an ignition interlock device requirement.

Ignition Interlock Laws Additional References:


Recommended Posts

Long Term Consequences of DUI

What are the Long Term Consequences of DUI?

How a DUI Conviction Will Affect Your Future One of the most common criminal offense charges that happen to drivers in ...

2 thoughts on “What to Expect for the Total Cost and Ramifications for Using an Ignition Interlock Device”

  1. The cost of a having a breathalyzer installed varies quite a bit and largely depends on the state where the service center is located. The installation cost depends on a few other factors like:

    • What kind of car you drive
    • What technology options your car has (like auto start)

    Some things to keep in mind while considering the cost of a car breathalyzer:

    Having the device installed saves you from the risk of driving with a suspended license after DUI.

    One of the most important things to know about car breathalyzers (or ignition interlocks) is that they save lives. MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) says that alcohol related accidents kill 11,000 people and injure another 315,000 people every single year. But with the addition of car breathalyzer laws, deaths related to DUI have decreased by 16%.

  2. Interlock Companies have varying costs on their devices based on where the Customer is located.
    Generally, in the State of Pennsylvania for instance; the fee is closer to $1100 per year or a little less. Although as I state, prices vary.
    Interestingly, it is not really the price that the consumer should consider. It is the location of the Installer/Service Center. It can be worth it to pay a little more if the Service Center is closer.


Leave a Comment