Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

The Safest Ways to Use Your Car Mirrors

Rearview mirror view

Your car has a number of safety features, but none are more important than your car mirrors. Without a functional car rear mirror and side view mirrors, you’d be unable to drive safely in a multi-lane situation, or even on a two-lane highway. They provide critical visibility of cars behind and beside you. Here are some tips for safely using your mirrors.

Adjusting your mirrors

The most critical thing for using your car side mirror or rear mirror correctly is to make sure they’re adjusted for your height. Each driver is different, and you’ll need to adjust all three mirrors every time someone else slides behind the wheel.

To adjust your side mirrors correctly, follow these simple steps:

  • Make sure you’re seated correctly and can reach the wheel and pedals easily

  • Adjust the side mirror outward until you can no longer see the side of your own car

  • Have someone stand beside and slightly behind your field of view, approximating a vehicle in the lane beside you

  • Make sure you can fully see them

  • Repeat this for the other side

For a visual explanation, Car and Driver has a great example.

For your rearview mirror:

  • Adjust the mirror up or down, left or right, until you can see the entirety of your back glass and the road behind you

Tips for safely using car mirrors

Whether you’ve had a car mirror replacement, or one of them has just been knocked out of alignment, follow these simple tips for better safety:

  • Always check the view from all three mirrors before getting on the road
  • Always adjust all three mirrors after anyone else has driven the vehicle
  • Always keep your mirrors clean and in good repair

With these tips, you should be able to use your mirrors safely at all times.

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

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Flexible Clutch Hose
Common signs include difficulty shifting, low clutch fluid, and feeling no resistance at the clutch pedal.
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 Find the Keyless Code on a Ford Explorer or Mercury Mountaineer
Many Ford Explorers and Mercury Mountaineers were manufactured with an option known as the Ford keyless entry keypad. Some models refer to it as SecuriCode as well. It...

Related questions

Q: How do I use the power folding mirrors?

The power folding side view mirrors can be folded inward to decrease the size of your car. This feature should be used to help you fit your car into tight spaces, or as a safety feature when driving through an...

Q: How do I use the manual anti-glare feature on the rear view mirror?

The rear view mirror provides added visibility out of the rear window. However, when driving at night, the headlights from other vehicles can reflect off of your mirror with large amounts of glare, which can decrease your visibility. The rear...

Q: How Do I Clean My Car Mirrors?

Cleaning your mirrors, or any glass for that matter, can be done with good results or poor results. There are some basic things to remember when cleaning your mirrors. This works for your windows too. First of all, do this...