What if we tell you that you might have been improperly adjusting your side and rearview mirrors? Do you know that there is a correct way of doing it so you could maximize your rear and side vision? The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) says there is.
Most people were told to tilt their side mirrors a little inward so that they see a fraction of their vehicle. While this is a bit hard to change—as some might have gotten used to it—a paper published by the SAE states that this is not the best way to have them positioned.
This adjustment of the side mirror will not give you a good view of the vehicle that is passing halfway beside your vehicle. Rather, it results to a blind zone that makes lane-changing extremely dangerous, especially at expressway-speed.
To adjust them correctly, you start by leaning towards the driver-side window, touching it with your head. You can proceed to adjusting your left side mirror to a point you can see part of your car’s rear end. As soon as you get back to a normal sitting position, you will see nothing on the mirror but the rear left hand-side of the road. Adjust the right mirror using the same procedure by leaning over to your right, just above the center console.
The rearview mirror, on the other hand, is not advisable to be aligned parallel to your rear window. Adjust it correctly by having yourself on a normal sitting position, with your right hand tilting the mirror a bit towards your side as the driver. This way, you could frame the rear window on the center of your rearview mirror.
You must understand that these mirrors are designed to let you see approaching cars from your shoulder and rear. In fact, they need to work like a widescreen, as the side mirrors should show cars that are leaving the frame of the rearview mirror. Having them tilted improperly will give you inaccurate calculations that may lead to an accident.
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