Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Do I Need to Entirely Replace a Cracked Mirror?

Broken side mirror

Your mirrors are definitely more fragile that your windows, windshield, or rear glass. They’re thin, and the two side view mirrors are exposed to threats on a daily basis ranging from shopping carts in the parking lot to other cars. What happens if one is cracked? Do you have to replace the entire thing?

Your options

First, if the glass is just cracked and isn’t broken, you don’t need to do anything (legally speaking). However, it does obstruct your view and constitutes a safety hazard.

Second, you can replace just the glass portion on most side view mirrors, rather than the entire housing. Even powered mirrors can have just the glass replaced in most instances, although you’ll probably want to let an experienced mechanic handle it.

However, if the housing itself has been damaged, you’ll need to replace it entirely for safety purposes. Replacement side view mirrors and housings aren’t that expensive, but they can be difficult to replace if you have no experience in this area.

Stay safe and get it replaced

Legally, as long as you have two mirrors that provide an unobstructed view of the rear, you don’t have to replace the mirror or the housing. That’s risky, though. As mentioned, a cracked mirror is already a safety hazard and it will only take a little jolt for the entire thing to shatter. Then you’ll be without a mirror completely.

When everything’s said and done, it’s best to stay on the safe side. Side view and rearview mirrors might not seem like much, but they’re integral to your safety on the road and provide you with a more accurate view of other cars behind and to the side of you.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.


Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.


More related articles

How to Renew Your Car Registration in Oklahoma(DELETED)
Having your car registered with the Oklahoma Tax Commission is an important part of driving legally in this state. You will need to do this within 30 days of moving to Oklahoma...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
P2422 OBD-II Trouble Code: Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2422 P2422 code definition Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed Related Trouble Codes: P2441: EVAP Vent Valve Stuck Open EVAP trouble...

Related questions

Q: Is it Legal to Drive With a Damaged or Missing Mirror?

According to the California Vehicle Code, Section 26709, every motor vehicle that is subject to registration in the state of California, except motorcycles, must have two mirrors that reflect to the driver a view of the highway for a distance...

Q: How Do I Use a Blind Spot Mirror?

If you’ve never used blind spot mirrors on a vehicle you’ve driven, they can be a bit disorienting while getting used to them. The convex shape provides a wider field of view and shows objects, cars, and curbs you otherwise...

Q: How do you adjust the power side view mirrors?

Your car’s side view mirrors provide you with a view to the side and behind your car, ensuring that you’re able to change lanes without worrying about colliding with another car. However, you need to have them adjusted properly in...