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How much do you have to drink to go beyond the legal limit?

On Behalf of | Apr 1, 2022 | DUI/DWI

The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit that indicated automatic impairment is set at 0.08%. However, looking at mere figures alone cannot give you a clear picture of how much alcohol it takes to go beyond the legal threshold.

The truth is that there is no simple answer to this since it boils down to individual characteristics. You could go well past the 0.08% mark after a couple of drinks while it may take another person more than that to exceed the limit. 

Here are some of the factors that could affect your BAC levels:


The less you weigh, the greater the concentration of alcohol in your body will be. This is because a person with a higher body mass has more water in their body that dilutes the alcohol, hence lowering the BAC. 


Generally, men tend to have lower BAC levels than women after a similar number of drinks. The different biological composition across genders is the reason behind this. For instance, men usually have more muscle tissue than fat, more blood and a higher body-water percentage, which all contribute to lowering the concentration of alcohol in the bloodstream.


If you do not space your drinks, the body will not have time to metabolize the alcohol, which will in turn increase your BAC level. Other factors, such as existing medical conditions or medication you are using may also come into play.

Will your BAC level affect your DUI?

It is important to keep in mind that BAC readings are not always accurate, and it is possible to dispute their veracity. Inaccurate readings can arise from external factors, improperly administered tests or faulty equipment. It can be a practical defense that may sway the case in your direction.