How to Fix a Side View Mirror Using Glue

The side mirror's glass is attached with glue from the factory and through years of heat, cold, and vibrations, the glue becomes bad and the mirror comes loose. Here's how to attach it again with glue or adhesive

How To Fix A Side View Mirror Using Glue

The side view mirror on your car serves a practical purpose beyond just helping it look its best. The side view mirror is responsible for giving you a clear view of what’s happening around the vehicle, allowing you to make good decisions when changing lanes or pulling out into traffic.

If the mirror falls off or is damaged, you want to know how to reattach a side view mirror using glue. The fast answer to your question is quite simple, but if you need a more detailed guide, read on further down in the article.

Once you clean off the area, you can apply some high-quality glue to the mirror. It’s important you place the mirror in the right spot because removing it could be challenging with strong glue. After the mirror is attached, make sure you secure it in place for at least 24 hours.

We walk through each of these steps and show you what glue is best for your side view mirror. We also examine the total cost for this DIY car mirror repair. 

What Glue to Attach a Side View Mirror to a Car?

The best side view mirror glue depends on what materials you are trying to bond. You want to look at the back of the mirror to see what material you are dealing with. Epoxy glue is good for many applications, ensuring a strong bond that is also impact-resistant. You can use epoxy with rigid plastics and metal. 

Other experts suggest using a special automotive silicone adhesive if you need to repair the mirror itself. The silicone adhesive can work as a sealant while still remaining elastic. Silicone is resistant to weather conditions and moisture, providing a long life. One we have tried that works well is the Loctite Epoxy Gel:

Loctite Heavy Duty Epoxy Gel, Quick Set,...
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Loctite Heavy Duty Epoxy Gel, Quick Set,...
  • Epoxy
  • Gel
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How to Reattach a Side View Mirror Using Glue

1. Clean the Area

Prior to installing the side view mirror, you need to remove any debris or broken parts from the housing. You may need a flathead screwdriver to get any small pieces off. However, you should never use your fingers to remove broken pieces of glass. 

If there are pieces you cannot easily remove, consider using a heat gun. By heating the housing slightly, you can create a more pliable material that is easier to work with.

Once you have removed all of the debris, you want to use a lint-free cloth to clean off any dust left behind. Give the area a good cleaning to reinforce a strong bond. If you don’t ensure a clean surface, the housing might not stick firmly to the vehicle.

2. Apply Glue

Carefully put some glue on the back of the mirror. Keep the glue an inch from all of the edges to ensure it doesn’t spill over. It’s also important that you don’t overdo the gluing in hopes of making it more secure. This big mistake only leads to a larger mess for you to clean up.

With the glue in place, put the mirror on the housing and hold it there for a minute. Don’t press too hard or the glass could break. When you are finished, clean off the mirror to remove any glue that has gotten onto the surface. 

3. Secure the Mirror

With the mirror in the right place, take some masking tape to wrap it up. You want to hold the mirror in its place for a minimum of 24 hours, allowing the epoxy to dry completely. If it’s not supported during this drying time, it could shift location.

It’s also best if you avoid cleaning the mirror with any chemicals while it is setting. Otherwise, you could weaken the bond of the adhesive. 

Why Replace the Side View Mirror

Nobody sets out to damage the side mirror on their car, but it’s a common occurrence. If you have been the victim of a T-bone accident where the front of one vehicle crashed into the side of yours, you might be facing some damage to the mirror. 

You can also break the mirror when you attempt to get out of a tight parking space and hit the object or vehicle next to you. It’s also possible to break the side view mirror while going through an automatic car wash, especially if the pressure is up too high. 

If you have children, they might play with the power controls on your mirror, leading it to break because of abuse. If the motor in the mirror is forced to travel beyond its limits, the glass could break. However, with all of these instances, it’s simple to replace the glass in your side view mirror with the help of some glue. 

Cost to Reattach a Side View Mirror Using Glue

The cost of parts for a new side view mirror can easily be under $100. If you are simply replacing the glass, you will need glue, a lint-free cloth, a screwdriver and maybe a heat gun. You shouldn’t need the help of a professional just to replace the glass.

However, if there is additional damage down to the side mirror and the entire assembly needs to be replaced, you might have to spend $500 or more to have this professionally done. In fact, if the mirror housing was damaged, there could also be repairs needed for the door panel and other body components. In this situation, visiting a professional auto body shop might be the best option.

Written by:

Magnus is the owner and main author of MechanicBase. He has been working as a mechanic for over 10 years, and the majority of them specialized in advanced diagnostics and troubleshooting. Certified Automotive Diagnostic Technician.