Reattach a Side View Mirror
Side mirrors are necessary for covering your blind spots and give you a clear view of what is on your side, and given their position they are predisposed to accidents when compared to other parts of your car.
All of the tools needed to reattach a side-view mirror can be found in a local hardware store, allowing you to save up to $100 on professional repairs. Paying attention to detail, such as choosing the right epoxy glue for the side mirror is essential to your overall success.
Which is the best adhesive to reattach Side Mirror?
The first thing to consider when addressing this issue is the best glue to use when fixing this problem. Everyday products are not likely to work when looking for a suitable solution, meaning you will need an extraordinarily strong adhesive. One of the best alternatives available in this sector is epoxy glue. This is a resin designed to provide adhesive qualities through the combination of different compounds.
There are varying types of epoxy glue in the market, and choosing the right one is essential to your success. Though they all provide the same adhesive strength, each one has different characteristics and attributes designed to address the various needs. You can choose between a liquid and gel adhesive, for example, depending on your specific requirements.
If you believe in your ability to get it right on your first try, then you can opt for a fast-set solution with your activities. If you’re rather prone to careful placement and delicate positioning when dealing with your side mirror – then getting slow drying epoxy glue might be better suited for your needs. However, it should be noted that the liquid format of this Adhesive is likely to be less messy than its gel-based counterpart.
How to Reattach your Side View Mirror
Fixing a broken mirror is one of the easier circumstances to deal with when facing side-view complications. All you need is a spare mirror and a reliable adhesive. As mentioned earlier, epoxy glue is a great option when dealing with this problem.
Products containing one part epoxy is your best shot of attaining an excellent solution, as it’s the strongest alternative available in this category. You will also need some lint-free cloth, a heating gun, and a pair of protective gloves.
Once you have acquired these essentials, you may commence the process and follow the below steps.
Clear the area
Before you can install the new mirror into its place, you will need to ensure that any remaining pieces have been successfully removed. You can accomplish this by using a flathead screwdriver to scrape along the edges of the housing to ensure that all the small bits have been removed. Failure to do this can prevent the new mirror from properly fitting in its place.
Do not attempt to remove small pieces stuck in the housing with your fingers, because of the impending danger posed by the broken pieces of glass – even with gloves on. You could instead use a heating gun around the casing to remove the stubborn pieces of glass before installation. Simply heat the edges of the housing until it’s hot to the touch – this will make the material softer and more pliable.
Once this is done, use a piece of lint-free cloth to wipe off any dust or debris that might be in and around the housing.
Apply the Glue
Next, apply the Glue to the backside of your mirror – preferably about one inch from the edge to ensure it sticks firmly. Don’t be tempted to use excessive Glue in the hope that it will enhance the adhesiveness experienced with the final result – as this will only get messy without improving your odds.
Once you have applied the adhesive, carefully place it into the housing and hold it there firmly for about a minute or so. You should also take care not to press it too tightly as this could lead to the glass breaking. Lastly, you could clean the mirror with a wet cloth to remove any excess glue that might get onto its surface.
Wrap the mirror
Once the mirror has been set in place, wrap it using something reliable such as masking tape to hold it in place for about 24 hours. This is because epoxy glue takes a while to dry, which means that there’s a chance the mirror might slide out of position if left unsupported for the first few hours. However, the drying time involved reduces significantly should you choose a fast-setting alternative.
You should also refrain from using chemical products when cleaning the housing and mirror so as to avoid weakening the strength of the Adhesive applied.
Choosing the Right Size
The first thing you should consider when replacing a side mirror with a new one is the dimensions of the replacement. Neither the rearview or side mirrors are the same size on every vehicle model, so the particular car you drive will determine your specific needs. Purchasing an option from an established provider of your model’s car parts is the best way to ensure you don’t make a mistake when searching for a suitable replacement.
Reattaching a Hanging Side Mirror
If the entire casing is hanging loose and not just the mirror, you will need to consider your options carefully. If none of the wires have been cut or your mirrors don’t feature any electrical functions – then using an epoxy adhesive can be a temporary solution to the problem. This can only serve as a short-term solution, however, and you will need to replace the whole part sooner or later.
Start by carefully lifting the casing to avoid any additional strain on the wires or remaining support structures involved. Next, apply the adhesive around the edges of the broken casing. Once this is done, carefully position the mirror back into its rightful place and press firmly. If you’re using a slow drying alternative – you will need to find a way to support the casing until the Adhesive dries. Tying the affected area with some cloth is also a good way to accomplish this objective.
How to reattach a car’s side mirror
Before you go looking for the perfect method that guarantees long term results after attaching your car’s side mirror, how about you first check on the manufacturer’s specifications. Second, before you commence any reattachment procedure ensure that you can do it and if you cannot, don’t gamble with your car and then end up spending more than what you would have paid a professional to do the job.
The reason for the above is because there are some mirrors that are easy to attach via the DIY process but there are other side-view mirrors that come attached with cameras and there are those that might need the whole door panel to be removed for easy attaching. Such jobs can only be handled with a professional in the field, and that is if you want a durable and effective finish.
Is a DIY safe for a side-view mirror?
Most DIY cannot effectively replace a completely broken mirror or a mirror that uses controls located inside the car. Besides mirrors in most modern vehicles are not adjusted manually like in the old models rather via automatic adjustments, and the more reason you should seek professional help.
But if you insist on a Do It Yourself process, then just know that this will only work with the broken glass part of the mirror. And the first step will be to find a replacement for the broken mirror, then check to determine if the backing also needs to come out. Some mirrors are also heated meaning that you first have to remove the wires before removing the whole unit.
Some replacement glasses are normally the stick on mirrors, which will definitely give you a hard time clearing the broken pieces before you attach the new one with epoxy or double-sided tape. Remember to put the mirror back in place as it was initially by attaching the wires to the backing plate and before you put it up, ensure that the used adhesive has set and this you can achieve by fastening it with painters masking tape.
If you own one of the high-end fuel guzzlers then reattaching the side mirror can be a costly venture especially if you have to pay cash. And one of the reasons why you need to have your car insured and also ensure that it is sufficiently covered so that you don’t attract law enforcement by driving around with a car that has a missing side mirror. Also, check on the laws of your state with regard to car mirrors as some can allow you to use less than three mirrors as you await repair.
Causes of side view mirror damage
Damaging the side view mirror is never intentional but rather due to circumstance. One case scenario is when you are involved in an intentional T-bone accident. Where the front of your car crashes onto the side of another car, most of these accidents occur in the intersections, when either you or the other driver fails to obey the traffic lights mostly due to an emergency.
Another probable cause of a side view mirror damage is when you are trying to remove your car from a tight parking spot. A good number of the parking spots don’t use the standard measurements, which then leads to the car squeezing for space. Some people are also used to double parking especially over the weekends, so if you are in a hurry and reverse your car without caution you might have to dig into your pocket to pay for a broken side-view mirror, either yours or for the other car.
There are some places that are not worth going in your car, because whether you like it or not you will be mugged. And if they can’t get inside the car then they will look for something that they can get away with easily such as the side view mirror. Your side-view mirror could also come out due to improper handling during washing.
Therefore, whenever you are washing your car, you need to be gentle and use the recommended washing products, so that your car doesn’t lose its sheen and you also don’t end up damaging other areas like the windows and the side view mirror.
Playing with the power controls is a kid’s problem and anytime that you leave them unsupervised in the car then you should expect some damage. Power controls have the ability to damage your side view mirror and this happens when the mirror motor is forced to travel more than the predetermined distance, which then leads to damaging the mirror glass.
With the above types of side view mirror accidents their severity varies, and most of which will require professional help to get them back to their perfect working order.
Occasions that necessitates a new side mirror
As we mentioned earlier there is no easy way to attract law enforcement than by driving around without a side-view mirror. And apart from the authorities you also put your life at risk; a side mirror on your car is not an option but rather a necessity. Some of its vital uses are in reversing into a parking space; they also show you how close you are to a vehicle parked next to you.
You will also use it to see cars or cyclists approaching from the sides. Side view mirrors that need complete replacing by a professional are those that are completely missing from the bracket or those that have been knocked and are hanging down. Some accidents will leave your side mirror heavily cracked, or on occasions that you are trying to move the mirror but it is stuck at one place thus not being so helpful.
Though there are many DIY videos on youtube on how to replace your side view mirror, you risk permanent damage, especially with the controls.
The best types of glue to use on your broken side mirror
Loctite glass glue- Loctite will hold your mirror in place as it is both heat and water-resistant, does not take long to bond and when it dries up it is crystal clear.
Gorilla heavy-duty adhesive – Gorilla adhesive takes as little as 30 seconds to bond is weather-resistant and paintable
Uv light glue kit – UV light glue kit is both water and heat resistant, it is versatile and can thus be used on different surfaces except on polypropylene plastics. The glue is packaged with a UV light, alcohol prep pads and glue pen.
Liquid nail mirror adhesive – the liquid nail is packed in a small portable tube, takes longer to attach the mirror and might need to be clamped. The adhesive is water-resistant, comes in the form of a paste and is fairly priced.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does insurance cover a broken side-view mirror?
First, check on your coverage policy but generally an insurance company should cover a broken side-view mirror. You will thus file a claim with the insurance company but if the damage is minor then repairing it might not be too costly and it will save you the headache of getting through the paperwork as you try to get your car fixed.
Is gorilla glue good for use with side mirrors?
The Gorilla 2 part epoxy has been made in such a way that it can work effectively when used to fix the rearview mirror. And once you acquire it, you can also use the glue on other projects that involve wood, glass, steel, and aluminum given that it is water-resistant and also a superior solvent.
Which type of glue is best to use on a car mirror?
The Loctite Glass Glue comes highly recommended for use in the repair of side-view mirrors. The glue boasts for being versatile and extremely strong and will hold your side view mirror in place for the long haul.
Can I use super glue on my side-view mirror?
You can indeed use super glue for your side view mirror but it will not hold up for a very long time. It is, therefore, a temporary solution for your side view mirror, because of the jolting and the side to side movements. The rearview mirror, on the other hand, can work with super glue for a long time given that it is not exposed to too much pressure.
Replacing the side view mirror should not be handled like an average project, the DIY processes are provided to act as a temporary solution and till you get to a destination that the mirror can be fixed. Most people can rarely drive without a side mirror as it is hectic, and besides if you depend on the DIY projects to permanently fix your side view mirror, you may actually end up making the damage worse thus the need for a professional.