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Jeep Wrangler - Restoration & Custom Outfitting
All photos, diagrams, and text on this page Copyright 2013 - David Todeschini - all rights reserved - see Copyright Terms

 

Wide Angle Rear-View Mirror

 

One of the first things I do when I get a new vehicle is to install a wide-angle rearview mirror. These things take a bit of getting used to, because the view in the mirror is almost as if you could turn your head 180 degrees. A good view out the rear, passenger window from the rear-view mirror covers the right-side "blind spot" that some car manufacturers employ sophisticated electronics to detect. There is no better way to avoid a blind-side than with your own eyeballs.

 

A good wide-angle mirror gives you a view of the entire rear window, and the entire right side rear window. There are literally hundreds to choose from, and the major auto parts stores do NOT carry any that are worth a lit fart in a wool mitten. You can buy a cheap-o mirror in an auto parts store, and you'll be searching the Web to replace it next week. You should get a good wide-angle mirror; and I have saved you the trouble of finding a good one. Links to some of the best ones are included below, along with one that also has a recording camera (these camera / mirror combinations are expensive, and not nearly as good as the separate Full-HD cameras shown here).

Notice that BOTH the ENTIRE rear window, and the ENTIRE passenger rear window are visible in this wide-angle rearview mirror.

 

You can see my hand (unavoidable) in the left side of the mirror as I shot this photo, what I want you to pay attention to is the area marked by the red arrow. This mirror allows me to see the entire passenger side rear window, and the vehicle that is approaching on the left side. A "normal" rearview mirror does not offer this view.

 

Also, please note that the view offered by a backup camera does NOT work when you're driving, and the backup cameras are NOT video RECORDERS like the Dashboard cameras are.

 

I get a laugh out of the new luxury car commercials touting various and sundry "collision avoidance" systems especially the ones that apply the brakes for you, even before you "realize" that a collision is about to happen (or that you're about to run over a little girl chasing a soccer ball into the street). I don't know about you, but when cars start making critical driving decisions for me, I'll stop driving and start riding a bicycle.... maybe I'll have shuffled off this mortal coil before America begins to look like The friggin' Jetsons. The best "collision avoidance system" is an educated and trained brain totally engaged in operating a body with decent reflexes behind the wheel not a brain that is engaged in the distractions of multi-tasking such as listening to the radio, texting, bullshitting on a cell phone or dialing it, programming a GPS, putzing around with the built-in dashboard iPad, talking to the On-Star operator, and trying to get the 3 kids in the back seat to shut the hell up.

Wide-angle rearview mirrors should be standard equipment; the reason they're not is probably that the curvature of the mirror distorts depth perception. This is also true with side-view mirrors, hence the etched disclaimer "Objects in mirror are closer than they appear". The fact that there is a vehicle in your right-side "blind spot" should be sufficient to keep you from making a right turn or switching to the right lane; how close it is is irrelevant for the purpose intended. The fact that there is an idiot slipstreaming you at 60MPH should suffice you to switch lanes, and is considered reckless driving in New Jersey and gets you 5 points on your license (see: N.J.S.A. 39:4-89). If you have a rear-facing dash camera and the imbecile rear-ends you, you have a slam-dunk case.

 

THE BEST WIDE-ANGLE REARVIEW MIRRORS

Although I have included two mirrors with built-in backup cameras, a wide-angle rearview mirror eliminates the need for a backup camera. Also, mirrors with the included cameras usually do not provide a wide-angle of direct view "in the mirror", because that is what the backup camera is supposed to do. Also, please note that backup cameras DO NOT RECORD what they 'see'.

 Allview Rearview Mirror - Eliminate Blind Spots with a Seamless View

 Allview Rearview Mirror - Eliminate Blind Spots with a Seamless View

 RAZO RG22 Black Frame Wide Angle Rear View Mirror

 RAZO RG24 Silver Frame Wide Angle Rear View Mirror

 Smart-Clip Wide Rear View Mirror (Black) (2.75" H x 15" W x 1" D)

MIRRORS WITH BUILT-IN BACKUP CAMERAS

 Peak PKC0RG Small Rearview Mirror with 3.5-Inch Backup Camera

 HD CAR DVR Rear View Mirror G SENSOR Supports 32GB SD

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