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If you get pulled over and your blood-alcohol level is above the legal limit, you’ll be arrested for driving under the influence. If that leads to a conviction, you’ll find that getting car insurance after getting a DUI will result in much higher car insurance premiums — if you’re allowed to drive at all.

In most states, it’s not legal for drivers of any age to drive with an alcohol concentration level at or more than 0.08 %. In Utah, it’s even lower– 0.05% BAC. Use our blood alcohol calculator given below to find out how much alcohol affects your blood-alcohol content level.

Insure.com’s Blood Alcohol Content calculator can be used as a hypothetical way to estimate the impact of each drink — but remember, it isn’t a surefire science. The actual impact of each drink depends on many factors unique to your circumstances, including what you’ve eaten and what medications you are taking. The best way to avoid a DUI is to avoid drinking and driving.

Blood Alcohol Content Calculator

Your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Score is 0.00

The basic formula for estimating a person's blood-alcohol concentration comes from The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Each drink in this calculation assumes a volume of. 54 ounces of alcohol (one shot of distilled spirits, a glass of wine, or 12 ounces of beer).

What is blood alcohol content?

Blood alcohol content (BAC) is the percentage of alcohol in a person’s blood. It is used to measure how much alcohol has been consumed, and how it can affect a person’s behavior and judgment. 

The basic formula for estimating a person’s blood-alcohol content, or BAC, comes from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Each drink in this calculation assumes a volume of 0.54 ounces of alcohol (one shot of distilled spirits, a glass of wine, or 12 ounces of beer).

However, many variables can affect how quickly alcohol enters your blood, raising your blood-alcohol level. The body (regardless of gender or size) metabolizes alcohol at a rate of .016 blood alcohol content per hour — or about one standard drink per hour. Contrary to what some may say, there is no way to speed up getting sober.

How does the blood alcohol calculator work?

This calculator helps you determine an approximation of what your blood-alcohol content would be if you drank a specific number of drinks over a certain period of time. 

Your blood alcohol level is affected by a number of factors including your age, weight, gender, time of day, physical condition, food consumed prior to having a drink, other drugs or medication you’re on and your tolerance level.

The calculator makes certain assumptions, such as drinking alcohol on an empty stomach. If you eat while you drink, the alcohol is absorbed more slowly into your bloodstream. Nonetheless, studies have shown that impairment begins with the first drink.

Key Takeaways

  • Car insurance rates are significantly higher for those convicted of driving under the influence and it may be difficult to obtain auto insurance at all.
  • A blood alcohol content calculator estimates a person’s blood alcohol concentration.
  • Entering gender, weight, and drinks consumed over a given time period enables an individual to estimate their blood alcohol content
  • Driving while impaired can have extremely severe consequences including fines, prison, higher insurance costs and serious in rate or death.

Different blood alcohol levels and their effects

Alcohol affects everyone differently. If you rarely drink, you could be severely impaired by a single beer. For the most part, by the time you feel drunk, you’re well past the legal limit. It is a crime in all states to drive with a BAC at or above 0.08%, but additional laws and penalties vary widely from state to state.

Here’s how different blood alcohol levels affect your body and mind:

BAC Level Effects from Alcohol
0.02 – 0.03 BAC No loss of coordination, slight euphoria and loss of shyness. Mildly relaxed and maybe a little lightheaded.
0.04 – 0.06 BAC Feeling of well-being, lower inhibitions, and relaxation. Judgment is slightly impaired. Minor impairment of reasoning and memory, and less cautious. Your behavior can become exaggerated and emotions (ex. happiness or sadness) felt more intensely.
0.07 – 0.09 BAC Impairment present in everyone. Driving skills such as vision, steering, lane changing and reaction time are impaired along with balance, speech, and hearing. Feelings of Euphoria in some. Self-control and caution are reduced. Riskier behaviors displayed. Judgment, reason and memory suffer. You are likely to believe that you are functioning better than you really are.
0.08 BAC is legally impaired and it is illegal to drive at this level.
0.10 – 0.12 BAC Significant impairment to motor coordination and loss of good judgment. Speech may be slurred; balance, vision, reaction time and hearing will be impaired. Probably not thinking straight.
0.13 – 0.15 BAC Very obviously drunk. Severe impairment to judgment, perception, and major motor skills. Very slow reaction time. Blurred vision, loss of balance and slurred speech. Feelings of well being starting to be replaced by anxiety and restlessness (dysphoria). Vomiting common.
At .15 BAC you are 380 times more likely to be in a fatal crash than you are sober.
0.16 – 0.19 BAC The drinker has the appearance of a “sloppy drunk.” At this point, most drinkers begin to feel incapacitated. Many social drinkers will pass out. Nausea begins to set in and the drinker has difficulty focusing on any object.
The average BAC among fatally injured drivers is 0.17, which is also the average BAC nationally for persons arrested for drunk driving.
0.20 BAC Out of it. Confused. Dizzy. Requires help to stand or walk. If injured may not feel the pain. Nausea and vomiting. The gag reflex is impaired and you can choke if you do vomit. Blackouts are likely.
0.25 BAC All mental, physical and sensory functions are severely impaired. Near total loss of motor function control. Increased risk of asphyxiation from choking on vomit and of seriously injuring yourself by falls or other accidents.
0.30 – 0.40 BAC Extremely life threatening. You have little comprehension of where you are. You may pass out suddenly and be difficult to awaken. Complete unconsciousness. Coma is possible. This is the level of surgical anesthesia. Death may occur.
Over 0.45 BAC death will occur in most people.
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Understand your limits and the consequences

Driving while impaired can have very serious consequences. Not only could you face fines, jail time and increased insurance premiums, but an accident could leave you liable for injuries and property damages. Or worse, responsible for a fatality.

Every day, 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle accidents that involve alcohol-impaired driving – that’s one death every 50 minutes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Car insurance rates after a DUI conviction can increase anywhere from 28% to 371%, depending on the circumstances, where you live and your insurer’s policies, among other factors. 
Instead, call a friend, take a taxi or use a ride-sharing app on your phone.

Frequently asked questions

What will be your blood alcohol score if you drink three beers in one hour?

A 180-pound male’s BAC would be around 0.0524 if they drank three beers in one hour. However, this is just an estimate and depends on many other factors, including food consumed.

How many drinks is 0.25 BAC?

At 180 pounds, a woman would reach a BAC of around 0.25 by consuming ten drinks in two hours. This blood alcohol level is calculated using the Insure.com blood alcohol concentration calculator. However, this is just an estimate and depends on many other factors, including food consumed.

How long does it take for one standard drink to leave your system?

Your body eliminates alcohol at a constant rate, around one drink in one hour, according to Healthline. However, this data may vary based on the factors such as your weight, the type of alcohol you have consumed and your physical health. 

How many drinks calculate to 0.8 BAC?

A 180-pound woman will have a BAC score of around 0.8 if she takes four drinks in two hours. And her BAC level will reach 0.10 if she consumes five drinks in two hours, based on the BAC calculator. However, this is just an estimate and depends on many other factors, including food consumed.

Sources:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Impaired Driving. “Accessed September 2022.

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Shivani Gite
Contributing Writer

 
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Shivani Gite is a personal finance and insurance writer with a degree in journalism and mass communication. She is passionate about making insurance topics easy to understand for people and helping them make better financial decisions.