How to Repair an Inside Rear View Mirror

by Don Bowman

Repairing the inside rear view mirror is not a difficult task, and can be done by anyone with a little direction. The rear view mirror has a separate flat base where the mirror adheres to the window. The window must be extremely clean and free of oils from your hands or cleaners. A proper rear view mirror repair kit purchased at an auto parts store is the only thing that will work. It takes a special, extremely strong bonding agent to get a heavy mirror to adhere to a windshield.

Mark the spot on the windshield where the mirror will be mounted. If the glue is still on the windshield from the old mirror, use a magic marker and put a little dot under the glue from the old mount.

Remove the flat mounting plate at the base of the arm of the mirror, where it adheres to the windshield. Clean this plate by removing the old glue and cleaning it with alcohol. The side of the plate that will adhere to the windshield is the side without a dot or a depression. This is important--it is the biggest mistake people make when installing the plate. If the plate is installed on the wrong side, it will not hold and the mirror will not attach to it since it is tapered on one side. Put a magic marker dot on the side with the dent or depression in the center so that it faces you when you put it on. Also, it must be in the proper position with the tapered end up, or it will be upside down and the mirror will not attach. Put the plate in the bottom of the mirror's base and pay attention to its orientation.

Scrape the old glue off of the windshield. Clean the spot where the mirror will go with alcohol. Install the primer that comes in the kit by bending the plastic tube until it breaks the seal inside as instructed on the kit. Turn the tube with the brush end down and the primer will soak the brush with fluid. Use the brush and coat the area that the mirror will be mounted in with the primer. Let it cure for 5 minutes.

Install the mounting plate by using the glue in the kit. Cut the top of the neck off the tube of glue to open it, and put just one drop of glue on the mounting plate on the side that will adhere to the windshield. Immediately put the plate over the spot made earlier, making sure it is right side up, and push firmly down on the plate for a minute without relieving the pressure.

Allow the glue to dry for at least 1 hour before sliding the mirror over the plate.


  • close If you put the plate on wrong and then try to remove it, you could crack the windshield.

Items you will need

About the Author

Don Bowman has been writing for various websites and several online magazines since 2008. He has owned an auto service facility since 1982 and has over 45 years of technical experience as a master ASE tech. Bowman has a business degree from Pennsylvania State University and was an officer in the U.S. Army (aircraft maintenance officer, pilot, six Air Medal awards, two tours Vietnam).

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