Are Ignition Interlock Devices Held to Any Quality Standards?

If you’re talking about ignition interlock devices that are state-certified and approved to be installed in your vehicle then yes, ignition interlock devices are held to strict quality standards. The ignition interlock devices manufactured by ALCOLOCK and other providers must meet or exceed state and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) standards and requirements.

All 50 states have ignition interlock device laws, and all of them require that if you participate in the IID restricted driving program, you must get the device from an approved provider, and have professional installation and service. Approved IID vendors must meet a number of state requirements regarding their IIDs and business operations.

NHTSA Recommendations

The NHTSA has developed a set of recommendations/standards for states to follow in their individual ignition interlock programs. Some states then exceed these standards by requiring cameras be included on the devices, more frequent service visits, etc.

The NHTSA says that all ignition interlock devices should be designed to capture a variety of date and time-stamped data, in addition to offender data, vehicle information, mileage and service visit dates. The IIDs should be very precise and accurate in measuring breath alcohol content (BAC) and meet or exceed performance requirements.

The NHTSA standards say the IID should pass a series of 16 conformance tests, as well as be tamper-proof and not interfere with normal functions of the vehicle. If you want to read all of the specifics, follow the link above.

That data an ignition interlock device must be able to record and transmit includes:

  • The results of all breath tests, including rolling retests — both passed tests and failed tests
  • Failure to submit a breath test
  • Vehicle lockouts or early recalls
  • Each time the ignition is turned on or off
  • Attempts to tamper with or circumvent the device
  • Failure to turn the vehicle off after a failed rolling retest
  • The date and time the vehicle was driven, and length of time
  • Mileage driven
  • The date of each service call

Each state determines when vehicle lockouts or early recalls are called for. You are automatically locked out of the vehicle when you fail a breath test. But if you fail several tests in a certain period, your state may have the IID set to permanently lock you out. This requires you to have the vehicle towed to your service center where they upload the information to your monitoring agency, and reset the device so that you may drive again.

ISO 9001 Certification

In addition to meeting those basic quality recommendations, your ignition interlock device provider should have the ISO 9001 Certification. ISO 9001 certification means the ignition interlock devices meet or exceed international quality management and quality assurance standards. If an IID provider does not have ISO 9001 certification, you may be getting a substandard device.

ALCOLOCK has ISO 9001 certification, and has for years. We’re a pioneer in the ignition interlock device industry, and we continue to improve IID technology while developing new products. We provide the utmost in service, and we are available to help you 24/7.

Schedule Your Ignition Interlock Device Installation

If you need to get an ignition interlock device installed in your car, you can call your nearest ignition interlock device installation location, or call ALCOLOCK directly at 866-700-9300 to schedule your IID installation. You should plan on having someone drive you and your vehicle to your installation appointment, and plan to be at the service center for about an hour. That includes the actual device installation, as well as the time it takes to calibrate the IID specifically to you, and train you in how to use the device.

Ignition Interlock Device Service Visits

At that first appointment, we will also schedule your first service visit. All states require you to bring your vehicle in periodically (usually once a month) for service. These service visits generally take about 20 minutes. During that time, the technician will upload the data your ignition interlock device has recorded since your last visit. The technician will also re-calibrate the device, if needed. After scheduling your next visit, you will be free to get back on the road.

For your convenience, your device will remind you of an upcoming service visit. If you know you are going to be unable to make it to a scheduled service visit, call your service center immediately to reschedule. Skipping a service visit is a program violation. And if you go 5 days past a scheduled service visit, the device will permanently lock you out – which means you will have to have your car towed to the service center to get the technician to unlock it.

If you follow the program rules, you’ll be back to full driving privileges before you know it.

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