Parking Garage Mirrors Buyers Guide
- Pick a lens type based on the location of the mirror. Will vandalizm be present? Is there a chance for breakage? What will the weather be like?
- Will the mirror be protected from the elements like rain? Choose a backing type based on the weather that the mirror will be located.
- What size mirror to choose? 1'' for ever foot you need to see.
What is a parking mirror? A parking mirror:
Also known as a garage mirror, is a mirror that was designed to allow a driver additional visibility while parking his or her vehicle. Because of the nature of parking, sometimes being able to see where you are backing in to is an impossible task, so by using garage mirrors you can safely back up in the exact spot you wanted to every time.
A parking garage mirror will greatly improve visibility and safety for vehicles and pedestrians in complex applications such as multi level parking garages. Garage mirrors are equally effective for applications as simple as your home garage.
Garage mirrors will provide wide and extended viewing around narrow areas and blind corners. Most often used in private or municipal parking areas, the garage mirror will allow you to avoid other cars and pedestrians while navigating through the facility and help you park in the small parking spaces. Homeowners can benefit from a garage mirror if they have multiple cars they park in one garage, have a garage that is hard to navigate, or have inexperienced drivers in the household.
What type of parking mirror is ideal for me?
There are a couple of different things you need to think about when researching which garage mirror is perfect for your needs. The distance between the driver and the mirror is the biggest factor, and will directly dictate the required mirror size. The longer the distance, the bigger the mirror will have to be to accommodate for poor visibility.
The viewing area is important:
Another factor to consider is what area you need to be able to see. Are you backing into a tight garage full of yard equipment with barely enough room for your side view mirrors? Or are you instead backing into a spot right next to another vehicle at an odd angle? Either way, a proper convex will need to be considered when debating which mirror to purchase. The amount of convex in the mirror will directly impact the area you are able to see, so try to find just the right amount and no more or less for optimal parking visibility.
What mirror shape should I buy?
The last major factor to take into consideration while researching what parking mirror is perfect for you is what shape of mirror you will need. If you need a very large area covered, you will need a dome mirror, which allows maximum visibility.
Dome Mirror Models:
- Full Dome - 360 degree, circular view
- Half Dome - 180 degree view
- Quarter Dome - 90 degree view
When considering a dome mirror, factor in the area you want the user to see as well as where it is going to be mounted. A full dome mirror will mount against one surface, whether it is a ceiling or wall, for example, while a quarter dome mirror is a mirror for a corner, where two walls and typically the ceiling intersect.
If it is only a particular spot, you may want to consider just a flat square mirror that is fixated at the perfect angle. If you need a horizontal area covered, you can get a wide angle mirror that has limited vertical application but covers left to right very thoroughly. This would usually be a circular convex or rectangular convex mirror.
How do I go about installing a parking mirror?
Parking Garage mirrors usually come with wall mounts, a bracket, and a swivel used for adjusting the mirrors positioning. You need to mount the bracket on to something such as a tree or wall with big screws or small bolts, taking care that the bracket is secure. Then you simply attach the garage mirror components together and your installation is nearly complete. The last step is to adjust the swivel mechanism for the perfect visibility coverage! Take a few tries at this, as you will probably not get it right the very first time.
Nothing to install your mirror on?
If there is no wood or wall to mount the bracket on to, you can purchase an inexpensive metal post, similar to the ones traffic signs come equipped on, and then install the mirror on to the post. If you are unable to drive a post into the ground by digging with a shovel, you will likely need to make use of a post hole digging machine and pour some cement into the hole, firmly securing the mirror post in the ground. You can then cover the cement back up with soil if desired.
Investing in a parking mirror could be the smartest thing you ever did. Damaging your vehicle or property by accidentally reversing too far in your garage is both a costly and dangerous scenario. Stop it from ever happening to your any your family by using a garage mirror.
There are several key considerations to keep in mind when shopping for the best parking garage mirror for your needs. You don’t want to make the mistake of over buying or under buying.
- What type of convex lens, acrylic or an unbreakable lens? If the garage mirror will be in a public setting then without question the unbreakable convex mirror is preferred. They will take years of punishment without shattering, cracking or breaking. If you are confident that the likelihood of damage is minimal then a convex acrylic mirror would work just fine. Both have excellent reflection characteristics which are equal to that of glass. For obvious reasons, a glass convex mirror should never be used as a garage mirror.
- What type of backing material do I need? For those unfamiliar with safety and security mirrors, the backing material is the material that the lens is attached to which houses the mounting terminals and protects the mirror. If the garage mirror is going to be exposed to moisture then steel backing or ABS plastic backing is a must. Keep in mind that steel backing is the most durable but also much heavier. ABS plastic backing is very durable and lightweight. If the garage mirror will not be subject to condensation, moisture or extreme heat & cold, then a treated hardboard backing will suffice.
- What size mirror is best for use in a garage? The most commonly ordered mirror for the typical parking garage is the 26” & 30” mirror. It is generally not recommended to use a mirror any smaller than a 26” diameter in applications other than for use in small, confined residential garages. It is typically not necessary to need a mirror any larger than 36” in diameter. As some parking garages have very low clearances, some prefer the use of the rectangular as small as 18”X26” to as large as 26”X36”.
MirrorPros.com has helped consumers purchase the right security and safety mirror for almost 20 years. If you need assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us and we would be happy to help.