The Average Cost to Replace a Side Mirror Is $20 to $450, Depending on Whether You Do It as a DIY Project or Take It to the Mechanic.
The average cost of replacing a side mirror is based on the national averages for all vehicles and does not factor in any fees or taxes, nor is it based on specific make and model or location. The cost of replacing a side mirror has a lot of factors to consider, including:
- Manual versus automatic mirrors
- Integrated turn indicators
- Blind-spot indicators
- OEM versus aftermarket parts
For a more accurate estimate that would reflect your vehicle’s make, model, mileage, and location, check out the RepairPal Fair Price Estimator
Cost at the Mechanic: $80 to $450
- Parts: $20 to $300, depending on whether you need to replace just the glass or the entire housing unit. The unit may cost more if your side mirror has mechanical functions, such as integrated turn signal indicators or blind-spot indicators.
- Labor: $60 to $120
A mechanic should be able to replace a side mirror within 30 minutes to two hours, depending on the severity of the project and how much needs to be replaced and reconnected.
Cost to DIY: $20 to $150
- Difficulty Level: Beginner to Intermediate, depending on whether the side mirror has mechanical components or not
- Parts Needed:
For most cars, this DIY project is at a beginner level. You can save money by replacing the side mirror yourself, although you should be aware that some makes and models are more challenging than others.
Keep in mind: There are many different side mirrors available, with and without mechanical components, each specifically designed for each make and model of vehicle available. Be sure to purchase the correct side mirror for your vehicle. When in doubt, take the time to consult the owner’s manual for any manufacturer recommendations. You may also want to purchase a repair manual specific to your vehicle’s make and model to help walk you through selecting and installing a replacement side mirror.
What Is a Side Mirror?
A side mirror, also known as either a side-view, door, or wing mirror, is a mirror placed on the exterior of your vehicle to help you see what’s behind you. A side mirror on the driver’s side allows you to see what is to the left of the vehicle, while one on the passenger side lets you know what’s behind you on the right side. You need both mirrors when driving or parking your vehicle to help you see anything behind or to the side of your vehicle.
What Does a Side Mirror Replacement Include?
You’ll want to start inspecting the side mirror assembly to determine how it is mounted to your vehicle. You can also consult a repair manual for your specific vehicle to assist you with this determination. If it’s mounted with exterior screws, simply remove the screws and mirror and replace it.
You may need to remove the interior door panel to gain access to the mounting hardware for your side mirror. Remove the fasteners, usually found behind the vanity caps or in the panel’s recesses, and be careful not to break any of the clips. If your side mirror has mechanical components, you’ll want to disconnect the electrical cable before removing the side mirror. Remove any screws from the interior of the door panel to remove the side mirror. You’ll replace the side mirror using the steps in reverse to put it all back together again.
What Happens If You Don’t Replace Your Side Mirror?
In most states, it’s illegal to drive without a side mirror, at least on the driver’s side as a minimum. To avoid a ticket or failed state inspection, you’ll want to replace your side mirror as soon as possible. Not having a side mirror also makes it difficult to tell if a vehicle is approaching you, how close you are to other vehicles or objects, and whether it’s safe to change lanes or not. Lack of a side mirror leaves you partially blind to spots on the road, which may result in a car accident.
If you’re unable to fix your side mirror promptly, you may want to tape it on using duct tape until you can get it fixed. You can also attach a small hand mirror to your side mirror housing if the glass is cracked to suffice until you can get your vehicle in to have it repaired.
How Often to Replace Your Side Mirror
The side mirror is not a component of your vehicle that has a regularly scheduled maintenance service, so you will only need to replace one if it has become damaged or quit working. The side mirrors are one of the most fragile parts of your vehicle because they stick out from your door and are attached to a small base. Your side mirror may get struck by another vehicle’s door while the passenger is exiting, clip a tree or mailbox post, or get caught by an object you’ve parked too close to, such as a fence.
Your side mirror may also experience a failure in the glass, such as excessive condensation. Either way, once you notice that your side mirror isn’t functioning properly or is broken, it’s time to replace it.
Common Symptoms Indicating You Need to Replace Your Side Mirror
While the most obvious symptom would be that your side mirror is missing or hanging off the vehicle, but you may also need to replace your mirror for the following reasons:
- Can no longer see out of the side mirror
- Inoperable mechanical functions of the side mirror, such as tilting or integrated blinkers
- Consistently builds up high condensation levels
Related Maintenance Services
There aren’t any related maintenance services to replacing a side mirror, but you may want to consider taking precautions to protect your side mirror in the future.
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