Your car is one of your most important assets; it allows you and your family to safely get from A to B. But that safety can be compromised in the winter time if your rearview side mirrors start to fog up or freeze. Even if you clean them regularly, your mirrors can still suffer from these dangerous problems. Here, we'll explain what you can do about it. 


Why Do My Mirrors Fog Up and Freeze?

In order to stop your mirrors from fogging and/or freezing, you need to understand why it happens in the first place. The air is full of water vapour; this vapour turns to liquid as it hits the glass of your mirror and then sticks to it. The water molecules also stick to one another. When the temperature drops below zero Celsius, the stuck water will freeze on the surface of the glass. 

To keep the mirrors from collecting this water, you need to make their surface less sticky, and take advantage of how the water molecules stick together. To keep the water from turning to ice, you need to make sure the mirror's surface doesn't get too cold. 

Using Wax to Keep Water Off

Wax is "hydrophobic" which means it repels water. Coating your rearview side mirrors with a thin layer of wax will keep the water molecules off. Make sure to invest in a wax that has been specifically designed for car mirrors, such as Rain-X; using a different kind of wax may not achieve the desired effect and may even negatively impact your rear and side visibility.

Find a soft dusting cloth and place a small amount of wax onto it. Do not use an abrasive cloth as it may scratch the glass. Rub the wax thinly over the entire surface of each mirror. Finally, buff the mirrors until they are shiny, and the reflection does not appear too distorted. 

The layer of wax not only reduces the stickiness of the mirror but also uses the water's own stickiness to clear it away. You may not know that the apparently smooth surface of the mirror is actually covered in tiny indentations that the water can sit in. Wax fills these indentations and causes the water to run into one big stream so that it falls down and off the surface. 

Keeping the Mirrors Warm

Applying de-icer to your mirrors can be a temporary solution to the glass freezing over, and applying wax should prevent water gathering and freeze in the first place, but the only sure solution to ice on the glass is to invest in heated mirrors. Such mirrors have a heated element behind the glass that can be switched on when needed from inside the car. 

Buying heated mirrors that are suitable for your model of car, and having them fitted can be quite an expensive and cumbersome measure; if you are especially determined to have a car with heated mirrors, it would be wise to make sure your car has this feature before you buy it.
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