While learning to drive, you were most likely taught how to adjust a car's mirrors before taking it out on the road for the first time. Then you were warned about blind spots on each side (which you should always check before changing lanes or turning). These mirrors can be adjusted in such a way that blind spots are eliminated, which means that only a quick glance will be necessary before changing lanes. You will have to start adjusting the side mirrors and then the center. Finally, you must verify that they overlap correctly.
Part 1 of 2: Adjusting the side mirrors
Step 1. Tilt your head to the left and adjust the mirror
You should lean in such a way that your head almost touches the driver's window. If the rear view mirror is adjusted in the traditional way, the side of the car should take up most of the mirror. You should adjust the mirror to correct this until you can see the rear side panel (the back of the car). If you've adjusted the mirror correctly, the rear of the car should take up less than a third of the mirror.
Step 2. Tilt your head to the right and adjust the side mirror
Your head should be as close to the center as possible without you having to get up from the seat. From this point, you should position the right side mirror so that you can see the rear passenger side panel in the mirror. Again, make sure the rear side panel takes up less than a third of the mirror's view.
Step 3. Return to your usual position in the driver's seat and adjust the center mirror
You should adjust this mirror to see as much of the rear window as possible. The goal is for you to see directly from the rear of the vehicle. Don't try to tilt the rearview mirror to get a better view of the traffic on both sides. The center mirror should compensate for what the side mirrors cannot show (and not compensate for poor adjustment).
Part 2 of 2: Confirm Blind Spot Removal
Step 1. Check the adjustment of the mirrors from a normal seated driving position
You shouldn't see the car's reflection at all in any of the side mirrors, giving you a much wider view. If you can still see the sides of the car in either of the mirrors, you can retry the steps above. You may need to adjust the mirrors to point more outward.
Step 2. Confirm the additional view provided by the side mirrors after proper adjustment
Now the mirrors should cover more lanes right next to the car. Not only can you keep track of cars behind you and to the sides, but you can also visually follow them as they approach, which goes a long way in eliminating blind spots. Although you should still do a quick over-shoulder check for added safety when changing lanes, you will now have a better view of vehicles and objects to the side.
Step 3. Make sure objects in the back move to the side mirrors as you pass them
Pay special attention to cars that pass you. As they get closer, you should be able to see them first in the center mirror. Then when they pass you, they will move sideways through the center mirror until they appear in the corresponding side mirror. This transition should be smooth. The vehicle must be reflected in the side mirror as soon as it leaves the center. In this way, the elimination of blind spots is confirmed.
If there is a gap between the vehicle leaving the center mirror and the one that appears on the side, you will have to readjust the mirrors, as there is still a blind spot
- You should check your mirrors frequently and not just when changing lanes. Combining this adjustment method with frequent glances will allow you to be more aware of the vehicles and objects around you.
- Note that adjusting the mirrors this way means that you will have to turn your head to parallel park, as you will not be able to see your car in the side mirrors.
- It will take some time to adjust to driving with the mirrors adjusted this way. You may have to wait up to a week before you get used to it.
- If the mirror comes off, you can reattach it with glue.
- Avoid adjusting your mirrors while driving.
- You should always look over your shoulders before changing lanes! Although this method helps eliminate blind spots in most vehicles, motorcycles, bicycles, and pedestrians are likely not as visible.