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HOW TO replace side mirror

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The vehicle here is my wife's 2010 MKT EcoBoost. I would image the Flex to be quite similar.


I made all the edits on my phone, so I apologize for the balloons versus text and arrows.


All the Torx screws are the same size so you don't need to keep track of which one came from where.


Also, these mirrors are expensive, so I purchased a used one from the Internet. Even new ones need to be painted to match, so the amount of effort is about the same.


Start by removing the door panel.







Remove the two 7/32inch screws.







Once you have all the screws removed, you need to pull the door panel away from the door. This will take some force, and you'll probably need to brace your leg against the bottom of the door as you pull. There's a little recessed area at the front of the door that can serve as a hand-hold. Once the door panel is loose, unhook it from the top/door lock knob and disconnect the 2 electrical connects for the seat memory buttons along with the cable for the door latch.




Those steps get the door panel removed.



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The mirror is held on with three 11mm nuts. You'll probably want the window open for the next steps, so make sure the window is in the up position before removing the switch panel, or reconnect the switches to raise the window.




Note the access panel in the upper front of the door.




With the access panel removed and harness slid out of the panel, you now how access to the clip holding the harness to the door as well as access to the three nuts holding the mirror. You'll probably need a pry tool to get the harness clip loose from the door.





Have a magnet handy when removing the nuts otherwise they like to fall part way down the door and you'll need to remove the speaker to retrieve them.


You should now be able to remove the mirror. There will likely be a white assembly clip stuck in the door. You'll want to remove this from the door and either insert it in to the mirror for reassembly, or throw it away. The mirror will not install very easily if you don't do one or the other. You'll also need to carefully feed the cable harness through the hole in the door while carefully removing the mirror so you don't drop it against the door and scratch the paint.



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Next I'll go through the steps to disassemble the mirror to paint it. The used mirror I received was platinum white pearl metallic and was in great shape. While the mirror looked quite nice, it wouldn't match the Gold Leaf Metallic of my wife's MKT. My local Sherwin Williams Automotive paint store is no longer open on Saturdays so I opted to try the Nason paint sold at O'Reilly Auto Parts. This was my first experience with Nason paint. I sprayed it using my HVLP gun at 45psi and the metallic laid down nicely. I cleared the mirror pieces using PPG Concept 2020 clear and let everything dry overnight, then reassembled and installed this morning.


Start by releasing the mirror "glass." This is the risky part and I cannot say I really have any good pointers on doing this. So far I've been successful at manually pulling the mirror all way open at the outer tip, then using a combination of a right angle pick to release the clips while inserting a long, small flat blade screwdriver in between the motor assembly and a tab next to the clip. This is pretty difficult to describe if the reader has not had one of these apart. But basically once you get one clip released, the remaining 3 pairs release quite easily with just a twist of the screwdriver.




Once the mirror is loose, start to unplug items. For the mirror there is a connector for the BLIS LED and one for the auto-dimming. There are two spade terminals for the heated mirror element. The connectors can slide out of the clip one direction which make them easier to disconnect. The spade clips lock quite well on to the spades of the mirror. It would be pretty easy to get too rough with these. I ended up using a large flat blade screwdriver to gently hold the tab still while grabbing on to the spade clip with a pliers and walking them off. Don't press against the mirror too hard with the screwdriver or you may crack the auto-dimming LCD panel. The connectors are keyed and the heating element should not be polarity sensitive, so you shouldn't need to be terribly careful with labeling. However, it's never a bad idea to photo document as you disassemble (unless you are doing this while naked, then skip the photos).


With the mirror unplugged and removed, now you can remove the rear housing from the assembly by removing the 4 Torx screws. I think I mentioned earlier that all the Torx screws in this part of the mirror are the same, so you don't need to keep track of what came from where.





At this point you can remove the main structure of the mirror assembly from the mirror front housing. This will allow you to remove the puddle lamp and LED turn signal panel.





There is another connector for the LED turn signal panel which is covered by some adhesive foam tape. Unwrap the tape and disconnect the LED panel.




You need to disconnect everything since you'll want to remove the wiring harness from the main structure which makes it easier to paint.







Manipulate the various connectors and wires so that they all fit through the hole in the mirror mount.






When you have the mirror to this point it will be a lot less to tape up for a quality paint job. I sanded the painted portions with 320 grit paper, used some mechanic's wire to hang the pieces up for painting, then got the paint ready.



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I have a 28' extension ladder hanging from the ceiling of my garage on a Ladder Lift. I discovered this weekend that this works quite nicely for hanging items from for painting.




After all the pieces were dry enough to safely handle, I reassembled the mirror. You may have noticed that during the disassembly and reassembly process I had some bubble wrap on my bench top. This is to keep the paint from getting scratched (make sure the bubble wrap is clean) during the process.




Really, the reassembly is the reverse of the disassembly. Other than having to be careful with the still somewhat soft paint, everything goes together more easily than it comes apart (especially the spade connections).


Reinstall on the vehicle. Park the MKT in the light and admire your work. You just saved yourself probably $500 (a new mirror is around $460, plus body shop material and labor).





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Fan-Freak'n-Tastic write up :thumb:


I'm kind of dig'n the introduction and/or use of the bubbles throughout each pic! Very cool!


I wish I knew how to do those bubble things, I'm old school though, but I suppose at some point I'll cave in, and allow my kids to teach me a thing or two.


Those bubbles remind me of MTV's "Pop-Up Videos" that was popular way back in the day (early 90's? :noidea:)




Anyhow, I've incorporated your "How-To" into the "OFFICIAL HOW-TO" List(s) so you will live on EBOF infamy :hail:


Check here under Post #17 -------> http://www.ecoboostownerforums.com/showthread.php?102-Modifying-Your-EcoBoost-Check-Here-For-The-quot-How-To-s-quot&p=24921#post24921


Thanks for taking the time to perform this write up, and helping out your fellow EcoBoost owners, and the EBOF community overall.


It's refreshing to see others taking up the torch, where I left off (in the realm of doing detailed "How-To's". Especially when it pertains to other EB vehicles which I do not own.


Rep points heading your way, and in all seriousness, thank you once again on behalf of everyone.


Mike :yo:

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Fan-Freak'n-Tastic write up :thumb:


I'm kind of dig'n the introduction and/or use of the bubbles throughout each pic! Very cool!


I wish I knew how to do those bubble things, I'm old school though, but I suppose at some point I'll cave in, and allow my kids to teach me a thing or two.


I use a free App for Android called PicSay to do the bubbles. I'm likely to purchase the full app since I've very pleased with how easy it is to use. It's much nicer to be able to quickly label the pics at the time they're taken versus trying to remember a day or two later why I took a photo. It also makes it easy to scale the photos down, all right from my phone (which also serves as my camera). And, no, I have no affiliation with the app or the developer.


Also, thanks for the rep points and placing this in the official how-to. I'm happy to help others to learn from my challenges. Although I'd be even happier if my wife and kids didn't give me so many "learning opportunities." I have plenty of my own projects that I'd like to spend time on.



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  • 3 weeks later...
Great how-to (especially enjoy the part about instructing wife to quit hitting things) I' date=' too, added some much deserved rep points. Great job!:thumb::thumb:[/quote']


Sadly, instructing the wife to quit hitting things doesn't work. She broke the new mirror off again last week. I don't know what to do, I don't really want her to park outside since I can't stand dirty vehicles either. I'm getting tired of spending all my garage time on friggin' mirrors rather than the LED taillight project for my SHO.


Thanks for the rep points.



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Someone hit my mirror last week while parked in the street (to add to my super sequence of car bad luck!). It is broken at two places but not the mirror itself... Anyways, beside the top cover, all the rest comes in one set and we cannot buy it without the mirror etc. So, I negociated it at 495$ instead of the 599$ retail price and he told me it would take around 30-45 minutes of labor to replace it... With taxes, we are looking at almost 650$... Grrrr... Tired of paying for nothing! Nice write up by the way!

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he told me it would take around 30-45 minutes of labor to replace it... With taxes' date=' we are looking at almost 650$... [/quote']


Geesh, you are having unfortunate luck! Not to make things worse, but these mirrors come unpainted, so did they tell you they would paint it before installing it?


And, yeah, the "temporary" mirror on her MKT currently is one that I disassembled and riveted together internally with 2 aluminum rivets, then reassembled. I've warned her that if she hits something with this mirror it will likely damage the door (although I really hope the aluminum rivets would shear first).


She didn't like my post on Facebook that I have enough practice now to change these out in 15 minutes. But even less than my post, she didn't like me telling her that if she stopped breaking mirrors I'd stop posting about it.



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