Side view mirrors improve drivers’ visibility to the rear, but they’re also easily broken or snapped off. It can be very dangerous to drive with a broken side mirror especially in busy traffic and on highways. Most shops can fix this problem, but cost relatively high. This is very easy procedure that can be done by every car owner with only a few specialty tools.
Replacing the Whole Mirror
Find the replacement mirror assembly. The assembly will include the mount, glass, hardware, and any electrical connections the mirror may have.
Mirror assemblies can be purchased easiest through your dealer’s parts department, although this is often the more expensive options. You can also find them online and at other auto outlets. Know your year, make and model as well as whether or not you have an electric or heated mirror, and if you have a paint color, trim color, chrome, or plain plastic colored mirror before searching.
Keep the car in park position. Turn off the ignition key. Roll down the window glass all the way to the bottom on the side you are replacing side mirror.
Disconnect the battery negative terminal. This will avoid electric shock while working with electric components in the power mirror harness.
Remove the interior door trim panel using a pry tool and take off the trim pieces. Find all hidden screws inside the vanity cap fastener around the door panel. Remove all screw with the help of screwdriver. Place all screws and trim pieces in proper place for easy access to it later.
Remove the panel off the door. Be careful; the door panel has wiring connected to it. Safely take off the panel and follow the wiring. Take note of where all the wires are connected so you can get everything back in working order later.
Find the wiring harness and slowly unplug it from the locking clip. You may need screwdriver to help press the lock. Do not try to unlock it without a proper tool. In case of manual windows, skip this step.
Loosen the mirror-holding nuts using a ratchet, socket and extension. Carefully take off the nuts and keep them safely aside. Remove the broken mirror from the door.
Insert your new mirror. Make sure your new mirror matches perfectly with old ones. Thread it in and hand tight all the holding nuts using ratchet, extension and socket.
Plug back the power-mirror wiring into the wiring harness. Make sure it properly locks in the clip. Again skip this step if you have manual widows and mirrors.
Install panel and trim pieces back and screw it hand tight. See if any screw or nut is missing and put it back if you find any. Put door panel back into the door. Press it until it snaps in all position properly.
Connect the battery negative cable back into the terminal. Tighten the nut properly. Keep your tools into your box.
Turn on the ignition. Roll up your window and adjust your mirror. You are ready to go now.
Replacing the Mirror Glass
Consider if you just need new glass. If your mirror assembly is intact, but your glass is broken or missing, you may be able to simply replace the glass in your mirror. Replacing the glass alone may not be an option if you have heated or electric mirrors! Check your manufacturer’s recommendations before replacing the glass alone.
Check with your local parts store to see if they carry replacement glass for your car.
If not, a local auto glass shop may be able to cut glass to fit for no more than a few dollars.
Use care to remove any loose or broken glass from your mirror assembly.
Clean the area inside your mirror with a lint-free cloth.
Apply an automotive grade double sided tape or epoxy adhesive available at any automotive parts store. Attach the mirror glass.