All You Need to Know About Replacing a Car Side Mirror
A side view mirror is a must for drivers who want a safe vehicle experience. It provides a better on-road experience and prevents collision with incoming traffic. Without a side, the mirror can be substantially challenging for car owners to travel without having a collision.
If you’ve broken your side mirror and are wondering where can I get my car side mirror fixed? —this guide is perfect for you. We will discuss everything related to replacing a car side mirror. We also discuss the cost of these side mirrors and a step-by-step guide to assist you with the process.
What Materials Will You Need?
Replacing a side mirror can be a fairly daunting process. It is a bit technical and maybe a little challenging if it’s your first time.
It’s why most people search for how much is a new side mirror on a car. And go to a professional to get it replaced. Fortunately, you can avoid paying extra for these mirrors by performing a DIY side mirror replacement.
Get all your Tools Ready
A side mirror replacement can be easy and efficient if you do it correctly. The best way to do it is to prepare your tools beforehand. This way, you won’t worry about keeping your tools in one place. Here’s a list of the top tools you need to have ready:
- Trim pad remover
- Panel removal lever
- Hooked pick
- 4-in-1 screwdriver
You can also get a pre-made side mirror replacement kit to avoid complications, so you don’t miss out on any crucial tools.
Order a Painted Side Mirror
Despite how skilled a person is at replacing their side mirrors, they won’t look good if the side mirror paint doesn’t match. It’s best to get pre-painted side-view mirrors instead of a DIY project.
It won’t cost you much as you will still save on the service cost for the replacement. We recommend checking various sellers before you learn how to replace the car side mirror.
Check Various Vendors
Having the right side mirror suitable for your vehicle matters the most. We recommend searching for an online store or shop in the USA. A popular supplier like Amazon should have several side mirror options for you to choose from. They might also provide buyers with information regarding how much is a side mirror on a car.
What Do You need to Know Before Installing a Side Mirror?
Wondering what the side mirrors on a car are called?—wing mirrors. We bet you didn’t know that despite using these mirrors for many years. Side mirrors are a staple for any vehicle, but they often go unnoticed until you need to replace them. There’s a variety of things you need to know before installing a side mirror, so we’ll discuss it all for you in detail.
- The side mirrors are placed on the outside (exterior) of the vehicle
- These mirrors increase the “peripheral vision” (or blind spot) for a driver, boosting visibility on the road.
- You may also find people referring to these mirrors as near-side mirrors, as they help see the sides of the vehicles.
- Most side mirrors depend on their vehicle type; for instance, the mirrors for an SUV and Sedan may be different in most cases
- You must be careful when installing a side mirror, or you can damage the mount.
- If you search for how much it costs to replace a car side mirror, the costs will range between $175 to $350
- Some side mirrors are costlier than others because of additional features, such as remote control adjustment and mist prevention
If you are new to maintaining your car or replacing the side mirror for the first time, we recommend educating yourself on the car’s basic design and available mirror choices.
There’s no standard size and design for every vehicle, as it varies. Moreover, side mirror replacers that use a DIY painted side mirror should keep the paint drying time in mind before installation.
Step-by-Step Guide for Replacing a Side Mirror
Now that we’ve discussed all the integral information on replacing a side mirror, it’s necessary to know the right steps. Most people get overwhelmed with a DIY side mirror replacement because they don’t know the right process.
Even the slightest mistake while replacing the side mirror could cost you your vehicle or repeat the replacement process. We recommend following these steps for easier side mirror replacement to save you from the hassle.
1. Check Which Mirrors You Have To Replace
The mirrors you replace depend on the reason for replacement. Even if one of the side mirrors is broken or damaged, it’s wise to change both mirrors together.
2. Gather Your Tools And Materials
Once you know the mirrors you want to replace, it’s time to gather materials and tools for the process. The materials might vary slightly, depending on the vehicle—but the remaining process is the same. Here’s a quick list of items you need:
- Leather gloves
- Safety glasses
- Black rubber sealant
- Precut glass mirror
We recommend setting all these tools and materials in one place so you can move on to the next step problem-free.
3. Prepare Your Side Mirrors
Since you have everything scouted and ready, it’s time to begin with the replacement. Start by checking for any damage on the side mirror and then picking the loose pieces.
We recommend wearing leather gloves to avoid scratching yourself in any way. Remember, you don’t have to worry about the previous layer of adhesive on the mirror. Finally, clean the mirror surface with a glass cleaner and wipe it.
4. Add the New Mirrors
Most new side mirrors have an adhesive layer designed to help the mirror stick on the surface using the thick bead of black rubber sealant and let dry on the mirror mount. Avoid using the sealant on the parts with adhesive, or it can be counterproductive.
Apply the mirror to the clean base and let it sit in properly. We recommend applying uniform pressure to avoid errors. If it’s taking too long, you can temporarily stick the mirrors with masking tape to ease the process.
5. Observe the Finished Side Mirror
Once everything is set and dried, you can remove the masking tape. You can use a cloth (preferably microfiber) to clean the surface and give it a clear look. If you observe, the result of replacing a side mirror is similar to that of a professional.
The five simple steps we’ve elaborated enough are simple to follow and easy to understand. You must follow them all while replacing your vehicle’s side mirrors. It’s understandable if you feel a bit overwhelmed because of this.
Bonus Tip: Don’t forget to adjust your side mirrors before returning to the road.
Troubleshooting Common Issues
The process for replacing a side mirror is pretty simple. However, if you handle it with negligence—you’ll face issues. The biggest challenge with the replacement is that most car owners don’t know how long it takes to dry side mirror car paint if they paint it themselves.
With a pre-painted side mirror, you can avoid this complication. However, there are several common issues during replacement that you should learn about.
Heavily Cracked Glass
While replacing your car’s side mirror, you’ll find heavy glass pieces everywhere. A single glass cut could leave you bleeding badly. Therefore, we recommend being as cautious as possible with the replacement. Leather gloves are most effective against these broken mirrors, making them the best option for you.
When a side mirror breaks, its pieces can spread everywhere and hurt you while replaced. We recommend cautiously checking for any missing glass and cleaning it out calmly. Start replacing the mirror only when you’re sure all glass is removed.
Distorted Glass and Reflection
Glass distortion and problems with reflections are common with broken side mirrors. The best way to handle them is to install a pre-painting side mirror instead of a DIY project. This way, you’ll ensure there’s no distortion in the glass.
Side View Mirror Hangs Down
The side view mirror can hang down or detach completely in more severe cases. Therefore, we recommend cautiously removing it from the mount using the steps we’ve mentioned and then adding a new one.
There’s no point in tying it up with a rope or other material. Moreover, it’s a law violation to drive without side mirrors.
No Movement in the Mirror At All
In some cases, the mirrors jam and don’t budge despite your best efforts. You should just slam the mirror carefully and discard the broken pieces. You can also spray a WD-40 or a similar lubricant to restore the mirror’s movement.
Tips for Installing a Side Mirror
Installing a side mirror in your vehicle shouldn’t be too much trouble with our five-step guide. However, there are a few more tips to further ease the replacement. Here’s a list of tips you should keep in mind the next time you replace your side mirror.
- Always maintain your distance from broken glass to avoid getting cut
- Ensure all electrical connections are in place.
- Always support the mirror while taking it off to prevent it from falling down
- Ensure checking if the mirror is in place with bolts
- Wear safety glasses and gloves to avoid injury
- Tape the glass if you fear the pieces of glass might fall on you
- Stay mindful of the wiring and terminal position during and after the replacement.
Replacing a side mirror is a fairly challenging experience for most car owners. There’s a variety of different side mirrors you can choose from. However, following the 5 steps we’ve mentioned in this article matters. Painted Auto Body Parts has top-quality car side mirrors to help you get started with the replacement process.