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Side-View Mirror Mishap

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A couple months ago, I had a bit of a er……. “mishap” with my side-view mirror.

Our garage is a bit oddly shaped because it’s wide inside, but the door is much narrower than the width of the garage. It’s a bit like this:

To have adequate space inside the garage, I typically drive in pretty centrally, and then once inside the garage, I inch back toward the left so there’s plenty of space on the right for another vehicle (though, in honesty, we usually only park my car in the garage and have a bunch of kids bikes, outdoor toys, and holiday decorations, storage for dried goods, etc. on the right side of the garage).

Anyway….from the title of the post you can probably see where this is going….

One day as I was backing up out of the garage, I didn’t quite steer far enough back toward the center. As a result, the side-view-mirrow got “caught” on the lip of the garage door and bent my whole side-view mirror backward. It somehow didn’t break the mirror glass itself, but the casing for the mirror got pretty badly dinged up. It cracked the plastic and busted the clips that held the mirror in place. It no longer functions as it should (its intended to have electric mirror control, but that no longer works). As a quick fix, I taped the mirror back in place. Otherwise, it just dangled on the end of some wires since the clips it’s supposed to be secured within are broken. It’s pretty……low-budget. Ok, ok. It looks terrible.

I’ve been driving around like this for a couple months now. I don’t even know whether it’s legal (I think so since the mirror is there, but it’s not exactly safe since I can’t change the mirror’s position to use it as it’s intended to see vehicles to my side/behind). At any rate, I’ve been putting it off for far too long and I need to do something about it. It looks bad and frankly, isn’t that safe.

When I googled 2011 Ford Explorer Side-View Mirrors, I was kind of shocked at how expensive they are! Looks like it’s going to be about $240 or so just for the part, not including labor. But then I got to thinking……is this something I could somehow DIY??? Like, if I found the part at a salvage yard, is this something hubs and I could figure out together – much like we replaced the leather on the armrest? But the fact that it has electrical cords worries me. I don’t know how to wire all that stuff together. Maybe hubs could figure it out?

I wanted to bring it to the BAD community.

Anyone with car/mechanic experience….how difficult do you think it is to replace a side-view mirror with electrical components? Is this something worth looking into doing ourselves or should I save myself the headache (and possibility of buying the part and somehow damaging it on the install) and just take it to a shop? Thoughts? Advice?


6 Comments

  • Reply margann34 |

    My husband did the same thing several months ago. He purchased the replacement mirror online and installed it himself. It seems like the cost was around $200. I am not sure how difficult the installation was. Look up some videos on you tube to see how difficult it is. As for your current patch job, black duct tape might hold better and be a little less noticeable lol!

  • Reply Angie P |

    I had to replace a side mirror and went to a junk yard. They were able to locate the right one from a car on the lot. I think I pad $50 for the mirror. A neighbor installed it for me.

  • Reply Cory |

    Just watched a YouTube video for the replacement. Literally 3 bolts/nuts and a wiring harness. The hardest part for the guy was to change the color panel, his car was white and the replacement mirror had a black panel. The actual replacement took maybe a half hour with minimal tools.

    • Reply Ashley |

      Thanks for the video! My side-view mirror repair plans are on hold with the new A/C issues….but I’ll definitely come back to this!

So, what do you think ?