Replacing car power mirrors

My driver’s side mirror is smashed on my car, and will need to be replaced. It’s electronic, which seems to make body shop assessors’ eyes twinkle with greed. As I can’t afford this on my (negative) income right now, I want to replace it myself. Has anyone had experience with this; can I just pick up any mirror made for my car model and year online, and plug it in where the old one went?

A big maybe on that. To get at the mirror, you’ll most likely need to disassemble much of the interior side of the door.

At a minimum, you’lll probably need to remove the inside door panel, armrest, possibly the glass and some assorted trim bits. You really ought to pick up a Haynes or Chilton manual for the car as they’ll have the rundown on what needs to come off

On questions like this, giving the year, make, and model will often get more helpful answers. The situation’s not necessarily the same for all cars.

Nitpick - I think you’ll find the mirror is electric, not electronic.

Getting a replacement: On some cars, there might only be one type mirror available. On others, there might be two or three choices, including a non-power (= much cheaper) mirror. These different mirrors might be interchangeable in terms of mounting them to the door, and they might not. Likewise for the electrical connection if there’s more than one type of power mirror. Before buying a mirror that’s a different design from what came on the car, make sure it will interchange.

Replacing the mirror: On some cars, access is through removing a small triangular trim piece just above the inside door panel, which is rather quick and easy. On others, the door panel itself will have to be removed, which usually isn’t a very hard job but can be quite vexing (and risks breaking something) if you don’t know how the door panel attaches - it’s different with different cars. A manual with step-by-step instructions can be a great asset.

This may be all in good fun, which is fine. But just in case you’re serious, those mirrors are damned expensive, and it’s not fair to impute greed to someone at the body shop.

Yeah I was joking. They did however say that they would need to do a special order, which would be expensive, and couldn’t give me a price.

It’s a 1999 Corolla, and does have the triangle you speak of. The wire connects further down the door it seems though.

The mirror choices do seem standardized on eBay, and not too expensive (but of course many have hidden cost in the shipping). Searching for installation information on Google mostly turns up places which sell auto parts.

cheap solution:

If only the glass is smashed (not the entire body of the fixture), cut a piece of mirror in the same shape, and glue it on the face of the cracked glass.