Replacing a Rear View Mirror
by Lee Wyatt
(last updated February 17, 2012)
While it may not seem very important, a rear view mirror is an item that is pretty much necessary for the safe operation of your car or truck. In fact, when the rear view mirror is used in conjunction with the side mirrors, you have an almost perfect 180 degrees view of what is behind you. When your rear view mirror is missing, broke, or some how defective this field of vision isn't working as well as it should. Luckily replacing a rearview mirror is an incredibly easy task. Simply follow these simple instructions.
- Remove the old mirror completely. Whether the rear view mirror has completely fallen off, or it simply got broke in some way there is still usually a bit a mess left behind. This mess (which often is a simple glue patch with a cushion) will need to be removed as well. This can easily be done by using applying some heat directly to the area (such as with a fabric steamer) or by using a razor blade. Ensure that you have completely removed the glue and anything else that may have been there as well as thoroughly cleaning the area to provide a smooth surface for your new mirror to stick to.
- Get a replacement kit. Take your old mirror to an auto parts store and use it as a base template for a replacement. Usually you can purchase a complete rear view mirror kit that includes everything you need to replace the mirror. Take the kit home, and be sure that you hold onto the receipt. If there are any problems with the kit, you will need the receipt to ensure that you can return the kit for the money that you spent on it.
- Read the directions. Before you begin installing the new rear view mirror, make sure that you completely read and understand the directions that come with your kit. These instructions will have the manufacturer's recommendations on how to apply the mirror and keep from having any problems cropping up.
- Replace the mirror. Once you are comfortable with what you will need to do to install the mirror, begin the process. Be sure that you follow the directions exactly, that way you can avoid any potential problems. If you do have any problems, you may need to repeat step one in order to start the process over again.
- Test the mirror. After you have the mirror installed, sit in the driver seat of your vehicle and see if it is working properly. Adjust the mirror as necessary to ensure that you get the best possible view, and you are just about finished with the installation.
- Clean up the mess. Finally, all that you have left to do is some clean up. This means properly disposing of any remnants from the mirror kit as well as any glue that may have dripped down. Be sure that you get as much as you possibly can so that you don't have any sticky spots which will collect dust and dirt on a hot summer day.