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Replace an Outdated Mirror for an Instant Bathroom Update

by Guest Post on Feb 3, 2011

These days, bathroom designers are moving away from the flat wall mirrors that have been a mainstay in home construction for years. Instead, they are springing for a modernized style with smaller framed or decorative mirrors. Replacing an outdated mirror is a simple and inexpensive way to give your bathroom an instant update. Removing a flat bathroom mirror is relatively basic as far as home improvement projects go, but it does require patience, preparation, and at least one other person to lend an extra helping hand. Removing an attached bathroom mirror without breakage is possible, but precautions should be taken to prevent injury and damage to the bathroom if the mirror breaks. Though we discuss one method of removing a bathroom mirror here, there are several different ways you could go about this project.

Safety

Safety should not be taken lightly when removing a mirror. Safety goggles and thick gloves should be worn, as well as long sleeves and pants to help protect the skin. One person should hold the mirror against the wall while another is attempting to loosen or remove the mirror. Every step of the process should be completed slowly and steadily to reduce the chance of breakage and injury.

Preparation

To prepare for possible breakage, cover the entire mirror with wide tapes such as masking tape or duct tape. Doing so reduces the chance of injury or damage caused by shattered glass. Cover other surfaces in the bathroom to prevent damage and facilitate easier cleanup.

Removal

To remove the mirror, the first step is determining whether the mirror is affixed to the wall with brackets or glue. If the mirror is held by brackets only, one person can push the mirror up toward the top brackets, holding the mirror firmly against the wall, while another carefully removes the bottom brackets. Two or more people can then lower the mirror and carefully release it before removing the upper brackets from the wall.

Most bathroom mirrors are attached with an adhesive. In this case, one technique is to slide shims behind the mirror wherever possible to begin separating the mirror from the wall and then soften the adhesive with heat. Apply heat to the mirror using a heat gun, or if that is unavailable, a hairdryer should do the trick. Apply heat around the edges of the mirror first, which should soften the adhesive and allow you to insert the shims further or add more. A crowbar can be used to very carefully pry the mirror from the wall in very small increments, gradually working from one end to the other, increasing the thickness of the shims when possible. If you continue to add heat and slowly increase the pressure created by the shims, you and your helper(s) should be able to remove the mirror in one piece.

Once the mirror is down, you can get a better idea of the wall surface you have to work with. Touch-ups will be needed before you can paint the wall and apply your new mirror for a modernized look. Now all you have to do is hang your new mirror and you have a brand new look in your bathroom!

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