It’s a super-hot day and you find your rearview mirror lying on the floor of your car. You get a little aggressive when adjusting your mirror because the jerk behind you is blinding you and it ends up in your hand. You jump up because you spill the cup of coffee between your legs because your ’69 Austin Healey Sprite has no cup holder and knock the mirror off with your forehead. No matter what happens, and however rare that it actually happens, your rearview mirror CAN come off your window.
Reattaching your rearview mirror is one of those repairs that is one of the SIMPLEST DIY repairs you can do. And cheap too.
There are a ton of different rearview mirror adhesives and epoxies and glues but I only have experience with one (pictured below). Permatex Rearview Mirror Professional Strength Adhesive. NO, this is not a sponsored post, YES, that is an amazon affiliate link.
ANYWAY, I’ve used it twice before, once in my old Mini Cooper, and once in my Austin Healey. Believe it or not, those dinky little mirrors pop off pretty easily after 30 years. but I digress.
What you’ll need to begin:
- Razor blade
- Rearview mirror adhesive
- Rubbing alcohol and applicator of your choice.
Step 1 (not pictured): remove the mounting button (mirror mounting plate) from the arm of the mirror.
Some slide off (with considerable force because you have no leverage). Some have a set screw. Examine yours and figure out how to get the two apart. It’s not mandatory but it’s less awkward to work with if it’s removed.
Step 2: Make a Mark.
You’ll see where the old mirror was attached by the glue that was left behind. On the outside of the window make a mark of some kind to know where to re-glue the mirror. I didn’t have to with this car since the windshield was already idiot-proofed and had an area for mirror mounting.
Step 3: Prep the surfaces.
Scrape off any old adhesive from the window surface and the mounting button. I also swab with alcohol as well to get it squeaky clean. (Then maybe use a cloth to remove the alcohol residue.)
Step 4: Prepare the window for adhesive (again)
This time you’re going to use the cleaner/activator that came with the kit. wipe up the window really well and DON’T TOUCH IT. Let it dry for a couple minutes or so.
Step 5: Cut the cap off and make a drop.
Not much to describe here. AFTER the cleaner/activator has dried use the razor to cut the end off the adhesive tube and plop one drop on the mirror mounting button (mirror mounting plate). IMMEDIATELY put it on the window RIGHT SIDE UP.
Step 6: Place the mounting button (mirror mounting plate) on the windshield.
As soon as you plop the drop on the back of the mounting plate, push it onto the window right side up (we should have mentioned you need to just double check which way is up) and hold it for a couple of minutes.
Step 7: Wait 15 minutes.
Step 8: Put the mirror back on.
Boom, that’s it. After 15 minutes ( I wait longer than that, it makes me feel better), pop your mirror back on. You’re done. You did it.
That’s really the whole trick. You just reattached your own rearview mirror in a matter of minutes. The kit costs like $5 at an auto parts store. I don’t know how much a repair shop would charge you for doing this, but you probably just saved 20 or 30 bucks? No idea, really.
Now go knock your mirror off and try it for yourself.