How to Reattach a Side View Mirror on a Car - Sane Driver (2023)

This article reveals how to reattach a side view mirror at home that is cracked or broken. You do not have to contact the auto shop to fix your pairs. If you use a side mirror that is heated with electrical components, you can use pliers to remove and replace the side view mirror.

How to Reattach a Side View Mirror on a Car - Sane Driver (2)

Side mirror replacement is even easier than you think, and it takes having the right toolkit to get it done. You would want to be careful not to break the mirror or scratch the car paint.

Table of Contents

How to Reattach a Side View Mirror

In this section, you will discover the various steps to change your side view mirror. Side swipe is one of the most common auto accidents, and your side mirror is exposed to damages when your vehicle is parked in the open or even while driving. Therefore, knowing how to fix your mirror without a professional can get you can on the road ASAP. You don’t want to drive without your side mirror.

Below are the steps to reattach a side view mirror:

  1. Get Suitable Glass Cut for Your Vehicle and Apply Sealant

How to Reattach a Side View Mirror on a Car - Sane Driver (3)

  • WHAT'S INCLUDED - Included is the driver's side flat mirror glass with lasered holes in the reflective coating for your vehicle's built-in turn signal, adhesive pads, and instruction sheet. It does NOT include a backing plate, motor mount, or heating element.
  • MEASURE YOUR GLASS - This mirror glass measures 10 1/16" diagonally (Longest diagonal dimension from top corner to opposing bottom corner). It is very important to measure your glass to ensure that you are ordering the correct mirror for your vehicle. Also, pay attention to the shape of your mirror and compare to the shape of the replacement mirror. It is common to have multiple Burco Redi Cuts mirror options for your vehicle’s specific make, model, & year
  • SUPERIOR QUALITY – Burco Mirror Glass Replacements are a quality alternative to OEM mirror assemblies. All Burco Mirror Glass is composed of high quality glass manufactured in the USA using high-end CNC equipment which meets or exceeds OEM specifications.
  • EASY INSTALLATION – Each Burco Mirror Glass includes an installation code on the outside of the box and a step-by-step instruction sheet inside the box to make the installation of your new glass as simple as possible. Installation codes are specific to each part, so please follow the install code that corresponds to your mirror glass.
  • VEHICLE FITMENT – Fits 2002-2006 Cadillac Escalade, Fits 2002-2006 Chevrolet Avalanche 1500 & 2500, Fits 2003-2007 Chevrolet Silverado & Suburban, Fits 2003-2006 Chevrolet Tahoe, Fits 2003-2007 GMC Sierra, Fits 2003-2006 GMC Yukon & Yukon XL


How to Reattach a Side View Mirror on a Car - Sane Driver (4)

You can find glass cuts online via specialty websites or use a local hardware store to purchase a side view mirror suitable for your vehicle make and model. Glass cuts suitable for popular car models may not be readily available in stores, so you can find it online.

When cutting the glass, ensure to line it up with the frame so it fits in securely. The next thing you do is to apply your rubber sealant around the frame edge. The sealant should not go in the center because that’s where you will apply the adhesive backing of the mirror. Also, the sealant application should go in a relatively thick layer, so you keep the sealant about 0.75 inches away from the frame edges.

Make the sealant smooth around the edges of the plastic backing of the mirror using a knife, scoop or spoon. Note that the sealant only helps to secure the glass in place. Typically, new glass cuts come with adhesives.

  1. Prepare to Install the Side View Camera

First, you want to get safety equipment to protect your eyes and hands because if you would be working with broken glass, shards can cut your skin or fly into your eyes.

The next thing you want to do is to use a flat tool and get shattered glass pieces away. If the glue is still firm, you can apply force. Try to get rid of the glass shards so that it will be easier to replace the side view mirror. You can do with your ice scraper or the flat end of your screwdriver. You want to be careful not to drop the glass pieces on the floor to prevent injury. Ensure to clean the plastic surface of the mirror to give your car a finer look.

Now, add about 3 adhesive circles on the back of the new glass. You will then remove the protective backing paper from the adhesives. Arrange the backing paper evenly on the back of the mirror following the product instructions to know how to place them properly.

When all pads are in place, you can remove the other layers of the tape or backing paper. Try to cover the central part of the mirror backing and not the edges.

  1. Add the Mirror in Frame

When done with the steps above, including applying the sealant, insert the mirror in the plastic frame immediately. You must apply a little bit of pressure on the mirror. Hold the mirror firmly on the plastic frame for the adhesives to stick while the mirror glues to the sealant. You can have a look at the opposite side view mirror to guide you on how you can place the mirror properly.

  1. Hold Down the Mirror

After sticking your side view mirror, get a masking tape to hold it in place until the sealant dries off. A duct tape will not in holding the mirror properly. Arrange the masking tape across the edge of the mirror and around the mirror to hold down the glass firmly for it to dry. You may cut off longer strips of masking tape, but that may not be necessary so that you do not shift the glued mirror from its position.

  1. Remove the Tape

The final step is to remove the tape you use for the mirror to the backing. The product label should reveal how long it will take for the sealant to dry. If you can’t find the recommended time, contact the product manufacturer. Otherwise, leave it to dry for about 24 hours. After 24 hours, you can remove the tape. Hit the replaced side view mirror gently so see whether it is glued firmly. Your car is ready for a ride.

How to Replace a Side View Mirror with Electrical Components

In the section above, you learned how you learned the general installation process for a car sideview mirror. However, some mirrors use electrical components, and the procedure is slightly different. Below are the steps to replace a side view mirror with electrical components:

  1. Buy a Suitable Mirror for Your Car

If the local shops do not have a suitable replacement side view mirror for your car, you can get it online from a specialty online store. Note that the replacement mirror must suit the make and model of your vehicle. Before you commence the side mirror replacement, do a rough estimation to see whether the new glass fits well like the old glass. If the glass mismatches, request a new glass measuring a more suitable dimension of the frame.

If your vehicle uses heated side mirrors, get a piece of plastic and metal-backed glass suitable for your vehicle model.

  1. Prepare to Replace the Mirror

You need some form of safety tools, including protective gloves, to avoid getting cut by shattered glass. Next, pry off the glass using a flat-edged tool like a screwdriver. Use the flat-edged tool to pull out the old glass.

A heated mirror is pre-attached to a heavy backing and does not need adhesives to stick. Remove the mirror gently with a little pressure to avoid damaging any electrical component.

  1. Remove the Electrical Connectors

You can remove electrical connectors using pliers. Attach it to the edge of the component of the mirror and be careful with the areas you find the electrical connectors. You want to apply light pressure, squeeze and pull the pliers to disconnect the wires from the mirror.

  1. Replace the New Side View Mirror

After taking out the old mirror, replace the new mirror and attach the electrical connectors to it. Use your pliers to grip and place the electrical connectors in the same position as the old mirror. Use the glass product instructions to determine where to put the electrical connectors.

Electrical connectors are typically thin, metallic blocks. Apply a bit of pressure to secure these blocks properly. Firmly press the mirror into place, and then you will hear a click. Add a bit of pressure on the sides of the mirror.

Also Read: Can you wash your car using dish soap?

How to put a New Side View Mirror Case

  1. Remove the Mirror

First, turn off the car. Use the flat edge of your screwdriver to pry the mirror out of the casing. Concentrate on disconnecting the clips across the edge keeping the mirror to its casing. You may have to pry the mirror a little forcefully to get it out of the casing. If the mirror will not come out, push the bottom of the mirror inwards for the upper area to pop out.

  1. Disconnect the Wires

Use pliers or your fingers to disconnect the wires and retrieve any electrical component. You can apply a bit of force to remove the connectors attached to the back of the mirror if your vehicle uses heated mirrors.

Find the clips holding the mirror to the casing and lift them up with your pliers to release the mirror casing.

  1. Loosen the Mirror Casing

Using both hands, pull the cover off the side mirror. You might find about two more clips. Pull the old casing gently with a bit of pressure to disconnect it from the remaining clips.

  1. Replace the Mirror Case

Replace the new case on the back of the mirror and confirm that it fits properly. Otherwise, you might need another case that fits well. While replacing the new case, listen for e click sound. You may have to apply a little bit of pressure for the mirror to click and fit in securely.

Final Thoughts

With this guide, reattaching a side view mirror should be complete within a short time. When dealing with heated side view mirrors and that with electrical components, be careful not to break the cables. If your mirror performs any electrical function, put on the engine and see if the features are still functional.

Meanwhile, follow these steps to backflush your radiator.

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Bernard Juchli

General Manager at Jay Leno"s Big Dog Garage

Bernard Juchli is an experienced racer, mechanic and team owner who trusts Avon Tyres.

Bernard is the lead driver and force behind his Big Dog Garage Race Team. He is the General Manager and Chief Mechanic of Jay Leno’s Garage. Bernard and his crew of seven are responsible for all repairs, restoration and fabrication of Jay’s incredible automobile and motorcycle collection.

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How do you put a side mirror back in place? ›

Disconnect the cable

Remove the screws that hold the mirror and remove it from the door. Attach the new mirror. Reconnect the electrical connector and make sure you test the new side view mirror before putting the parts back into place. Reverse the entire procedure to reassemble the door trim panel.

Can you reattach a broken side mirror? ›

You don't have to replace the entire side view mirror assembly just because the glass is broken. Side mirror repair is a do-it-yourself project that is usually inexpensive.

Can a mirror be glued back together? ›

For bonding most glass surfaces, you'll need a specialized glass glue. These glues are specifically designed to bond with glass' unique properties, including clarity, and can be used to fix broken dishware, antiques, mirrors, appliances, and countless other things.

Will Gorilla Glue hold a side view mirror? ›

Will Gorilla Super Glue Work on a Rearview Mirror? Much like regular super glue, Gorilla glue is not designed to hold metal to glass or to be used for reattaching a rearview mirror.

Can you Gorilla Glue a side mirror? ›

Gorilla glue or Loctite should work well. Loctite is used on airliners.

How do you fix a loose side mirror on a car? ›

If the mount is loose on the side of the door—Remove the interior panel on the inside of the door to access the bolts and tighten them. If the mirror glass is loose on the case—Pry the glass off with a screwdriver. Apply new adhesive and sealant and press firmly into place. Secure the glass with tape for 24 hours.

How much does it cost to reattach a car side mirror? ›

On average, one broken side mirror will set you back by about $299, with the final price heavily relying on two components. The first one is the cost of materials, which ranges from $139 and $328. The second one is labor cost; here, an additional $90 is usually added to the price.

How much does it cost to reattach a side mirror? ›

On average, replacing a side mirror comes with a cost of $299. The total price is typically broken down into two sections, the materials, and the labor. For materials, you're looking for anywhere between $139 and $328, and for the labor, you may pay up to $90.

Can I fix my side mirror myself? ›

You don't have to replace the entire side view mirror assembly just because the glass is broken. Replacing the mirror glass is a do-it-yourself project that is usually inexpensive. Several manufacturers offer precut glass mirrors to fit vehicles of all makes and models.

What is the driver side mirror called? ›

A side-view mirror (or side mirror), also known as a wing mirror, is a mirror placed on the exterior of motor vehicles for the purposes of helping the driver see areas behind and to the sides of the vehicle, outside the driver's peripheral vision (in the "blind spot").

Does AutoZone fix side mirrors? ›

When broken windows or mirrors occur, AutoZone has the high-quality replacement for your ride.

What happens if you drive with a broken side mirror? ›

If the wing mirror is completely broken off, then it is illegal to drive. This is because a broken wing mirror can obstruct the driver's view and cause an accident. If you are caught driving with a broken wing mirror, you may be fined and could even have your license revoked.

Can I glue my car side mirror back on? ›

If you need to re-attach the side mirror, use a super-strength adhesive such as Loctite Super Glue Liquid Universal. Do not use it for the glass itself, though. For this, Loctite Super Glue Glass is ideal. It creates strong, invisible bonds in just a few seconds.

What is the best glue for mirror? ›

Urethane and Silicone: Built for Bonding with Mirrors

Two types of adhesives that get the best results with mirrors are urethanes and silicones, neither of which are solvent-based adhesive systems. Urethane adhesives are usually as sold as two-part adhesives.

Which glue is used to stick glass? ›

Epoxy glue is available in the market with the highest tensile strength and is considered the best glue for glass. It can be applied to surfaces like glass, metal, and plastic.

How do you hold a mirror in place when glue dries? ›

3 | Use some double sided mirror tape on the back side of the mirror, this will help hold it to the wall while the glue dries. Do not rely on tape only, you will need glue as well for a long lasting bond. Run these strips of tape vertically on the mirror.

Can double sided tape hold a mirror? ›

Mirror mounting has never been faster and easier than with double-sided adhesive tape. Our special double-sided tapes for mirror mounting usually consist of film or foam backings. The type of backing depends on the task and the surface. Film tapes are perfect for bonding to flat and smooth surfaced.

Does mirror adhesive work? ›

Mirror adhesive is extremely strong; removing it will strip the paint off the wall and potentially damage the drywall. Better to get it right first time! Clean the mirror and wall. All surfaces should be completely free from dust and dirt.

How much does it cost to get a side mirror put back on? ›

On average, one broken side mirror will set you back by about $299, with the final price heavily relying on two components. The first one is the cost of materials, which ranges from $139 and $328. The second one is labor cost; here, an additional $90 is usually added to the price.

What kind of glue to use on a car mirror? ›

Examine the back of the new mirror and the surface on the car it will be bonded to and make sure to choose a compatible automotive silicone mirror adhesive. Most experts agree, a good silicone sealant that is strong and flexible and resists moisture is your best bet.


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