How to Pass a Urine Test for Alcohol

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drug test alcohol

If you have recently been applying for jobs or attending interviews, it is possible that you have heard the buzz word drug testing. This practice is becoming standard in many industries, an integral part of the hiring process. More than fifty percent of employers are conducting drug testing on their employees, either as a part of the hiring process or during employee evaluations or random checks [1].

Drug testing for illegal or controlled substances is something we are all likely to face sooner or later. Despite being an invasion of privacy, drug testing is also a breach of trust, which is never a sound basis for a good business relationship. Drug testing for alcohol is undoubtedly something that most of us might face at one point, with recreational drug and alcohol use so prevalent in the population.

It is why we have prepared a guide on how to pass a drug test for alcohol and test yourself at home to be certain. This guide intends to clarify any questions you have about alcohol in your body and what to expect from the alcohol testing process.

Does Alcohol Show Up in a Urine Drug Test?

Yes, a urine drug test is also the most popular type of test conducted by people and facilities. While being metabolized in our system, alcohol ends up in the urine before being expelled. If a urine drug test is performed while the alcohol is still present, the test will most likely be positive.

A positive urine alcohol test can carry severe consequences, including suspension, sports termination, and a damaged reputation.

How Long Does Alcohol Stay in Urine?

The most common drug test used by companies is the urine drug test. Urine tests are inexpensive to perform and reasonably accurate for their purpose. When facing a urine test for alcohol, it is essential to understand how long it will show up in your urine after drinking.

After being metabolized by the liver [2], alcohol will move to your urine. How long the alcohol will be detectable in your urine depends on several factors:

  • The amount of alcohol you have consumed
  • Your overall health, especially liver function
  • Age and genetics [3]
  • Whether you consumed any food while drinking
  • The time of your last drink

On average, the standard urine tests can detect alcohol in urine for twelve to twenty-four hours after the last drink. There have been developments in drug testing, though, and more advanced tests can detect alcohol in urine anywhere from three to seven days. Those extended tests are more expensive and not as common, however.

Can I Drink the Night Before a Drug Test?

While it might be within the realms of possibility that your body can fully metabolize alcohol and expel it through urine overnight, consuming alcohol the night before the test is risky. There is no way to determine the likelihood of a positive or negative urine test in those circumstances, due to the large variety of factors.

The chances are good that alcohol will show up in a urine drug test if you have been drinking the night before. Testing is evolving, and it might be nearly impossible to beat a drug test on such short notice in the future. If you want to be sure to pass the test, one of the most important things you should do is avoid consuming alcohol the night before the test.

Tips for Passing a Drug Test for Alcohol

Our intention is not to provide you with ways to cheat a urine drug test or to offer advice on how to trick the system. Drug testing is a necessary and even essential practice in sensitive jobs, ensuring the safety of people performing these tasks.

If you would like to pass the urine drug test for alcohol, consider these steps:

Abstain From Drinking at Least 24 Hours Before the Test

Not drinking at least a full day before the drug test will increase the chances of a negative test. Bodies metabolize alcohol differently, so give yours enough time to expel the alcohol before taking the test.

Drink Plenty of Water

Staying hydrated has excellent benefits to your health, so why should it be any different when it comes to a urine drug test? Water will help you metabolize and expel alcohol faster. It will also help dilute the alcohol content in your urine, increasing your chances of a negative test.

Eat While Drinking

If you are going to have a drink close to the time of your urine drug test, make sure that you don’t do it on an empty stomach. Have a full, nutritious meal with your drinks. The alcohol will leave your body sooner, and you will be more likely to test negative.

Make Sure to Pee Before Your Test

Most of the drug testing is done early in the morning, to avoid the possibility of alcohol being metabolized during the day at work. Since your body will be working all night to metabolize and expel alcohol from your body, in the morning, the concentration of alcohol in your urine will be at its highest.

Taking a pee (or two) before facing the final urine drug test is vital. Drink plenty of water and try to expel as much of the urine as you can before the test.


It is essential to be aware of your employer’s drug testing policies. Does your employer perform random checks, or are they scheduled? Is a zero-tolerance system in place, or are there limits for passing the test?

These are all important facts that you should know to plan accordingly.

Random tests are the hardest to pass. Avoid late-night drinking during the workweek if that is the case and follow the tips we have listed.


We are aware that drug testing (including alcohol) is necessary for many professions, but it represents an invasion of privacy and breach of trust between the employer and employee. We believe that every individual should know their rights and the details of their company’s drug testing policy.


1. Reasons for testing: Random drug testing

2. Alcohol Metabolism

3. Facts About Aging and Alcohol

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