+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Mirror Removal

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    1

    Default Mirror Removal

    Our home is a 25 year old tract house in a mild climate. We need to replace the mirror in the guest bath which has dark spots created by moisture. The replacement is smaller so I'm aware that the wall will have to be repainted. The problem is the original mirror resting on a u channel is also glued to the sheet rock! Could anyone give me advise? Thanks' Rex

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    The staining that you're seeing is likely a result of the glue reacting to the silver coating on the back of the mirror.

    I absolutely HATE glued mirrors!

    First and foremost you absolutely must wear protective clothing, gloves, and safety glasses! Glass is nothing to be trifled with, especially when the likelihood of breakage is extremely high! You want long sleeved shirt, leather work gloves, safety glasses or a face shield. You'll want to clear the clutter out of the room and cover the sink/counter with a heavy blanket topped with a tarp which will catch most of the glass should the mirror break while removing it.

    There will likely be a couple of clips at the top and sides of the mirror that are screwed into the wall. Remove them. You will need a flat pry bar or two such as a wonderbar.

    You will be prying along the edges of the mirror very gently to try and get it to release from the glue/wall. If you're lucky the mirror will release intact. Most likely what is going to happen is the glass will shatter - hence the protective clothing. Regardless, you're going to continue prying around the edges until you get the pieces off the wall.

    An alternative would be to cloak the mirror with the tarp and blanket and smash the mirror with a hammer, then pry off the pieces. This is actually a much safer means of dealing with it, then you're not going to be injured by an unexpectedly shattering piece of glass.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago
    Posts
    1,583

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    I share Spruce's dislike of huge , glued on wall mirrors. Aesthetically, they have all the warmth of a Chevron station washroom They are also a pain in the rear to remove.

    That staining you are referring to normally is from water getting in the u-channel and working away at the silvering. It is very common along the bottom edges of mirrors which are close to splashing water.

    A couple safety tricks: tape the life out of that mirror with sturdy tape. Should it shatter, the shards of broken glass will be contained. Another trick is to use that self-sticking plastic carpet protector.

    Mirror glass is actually quite strong. If you take your time while gradually prying, they often come down intact.

    Once the mirror is off, you will find either globs or squiggles of mirror mastic. It is black and will bleed through the new paint if you don't get rid of it first. I always found it easiest to cut through the drywall paper around the perimeter of the mastic and then peel the paper layer off the drywall. Then put a non-water soluble primer such as Kilz on the bared brown drywall paper. After dry, patch the primed areas, sand and then prime again. If you don't prime the exposed brown drywall paper, the moisture from the patching compound will often cause the paper to wrinkle up. The Kilz seals it down and protects it from that moisture.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    Quote Originally Posted by ordjen View Post
    That staining you are referring to normally is from water getting in the u-channel and working away at the silvering. It is very common along the bottom edges of mirrors which are close to splashing water.
    Not sure how much water affects the silvering, since most mirror edges are exposed and receive lots of condensation each time the shower is used. What DOES eat silvering is ammonia, such as that found in Windex and other glass cleaners. One should always take care when cleaning with such things that they do not get it over the edges of the mirror.

    Quote Originally Posted by ordjen View Post
    A couple safety tricks: tape the life out of that mirror with sturdy tape. Should it shatter, the shards of broken glass will be contained. Another trick is to use that self-sticking plastic carpet protector.
    I very much like these ideas. Even if you purposely shatter the mirror to remove it, the tape/plastic will keep the shards intact rather than showering them everywhere. I knew we kept you around here for a reason Ordjen.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,360

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    Metal and glass generally doesn't mix. Instead of prying with a metal tool, I'd first get some $5 suction cups (google Home depot SKU # 253240 )and wiggle the mirror from the wall.

    1-Remove the upper clips
    2- Starting 18" away from each edge at an upper corner, place the suction cup on the mirror and give it a gentle tugging. The mirror will bend slightly as the glue gobs start to separate from the drywall.
    3- Taking note of the amount of movement, move the suction cup along the upper section of the mirror, pulling in the repeated tugging fashion to wiggle the mirror off the wall.
    4- Once it starts peeling from the wall, skip the suction cup and (wearing gloves) pull the mirror from the wall, pivoting on the bottom edge.
    5- Now that its off the wall your next problem arises- what to do with it. Suggestions;

    A- Craigs List (people want these things)
    B- Take it to a glass company and ask if you can use their dumpster.
    C- Take it to an appropriate landfill.

    Be aware that mirrors can take a pretty good punch straight on, but shatter most easily when tapped on edge.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,081

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    Ordjen,
    Tomorrow I plan to stop at a Chevron station to check the mirror in the bathroom...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago
    Posts
    1,583

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    Spruce,

    You could be correct about the silvering. I just know that I have never seen the silvering break down except along the bottom edge. I just assumed it was the constant splashing and retaining of water in that u-channel.

    Houston,

    Are you thinking of something like the glass/window installers use to carry glass? I have never priced those but think they would be not inexpensive. Not a bad idea though, especially if you run into mirror removal farely often. I've probably only removed 20 mirrors over the last 30 years. Managed to get most of them out intact with my trusty painters putty knife.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,360

    Default Re: Mirror Removal

    We have 2 of the cheapie $5 suction cups and they work just fine. Check out the HD sku number listed above for the exact ones we have.

    Most of our mirrors come out in one piece too.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •