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Charles
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi guys, I usually manage to get behind the mirror and get it off of the wall in one piece when lucky. Sometimes I need to break it and take it down in pieces. With complete remodel I don't have to worry too much about any piece falling down and possibly damaging vanity top or floor. Always ready to move away when something should come down loose on it's own.

I was asked to give estimate for update of 2 bathrooms where mirror covers entire wall above vanity. Wall to wall (6') and from soffit all the way down to back splash.

1. I don't have access to any edge to get behind the mirror
2. They are keeping existing counter top and floor so I can't just brake it and risking damage to existing materials.

I am one man show. :whistling Any tips on taking mirror down in situation like that by myself?

Anyone using suction cups to remove mirrors? That's the only thing that i can come up with but still not sure if I can get the mirror loose with U channels on top and bottom of the mirror. I've in many cases a lot of silicone behind top u channel.

Maybe 1/4" plywood on top of the vanity, wall to wall and just break it if it comes to that? I did not have much luck trying to cut the glass on wall to break it in controlled size pieces.

Any thoughts or ideas?

Thanks Charles
 

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Super Moderator
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10,658 Posts
Does the soffit stay too? Removing that would allow you to get behind the mirrors. Without any access, you really don't have much of a chance without breakage. Tape it up thoroughly and you can control some of the debris when you break it.
 

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I have only broken one out of like 50 plus (lost count). But I don't know how you can gently pry it away with no access to the sides or top except for suction cups.

The only trick I can offer you that has worked well for me is complete silence. Work very very very slowly and listen for the drywall paper to pull or the glue to break. Listen very hard and you can hear the progress behind the mirror and plan to spend at least an hour with suction cups. You'll hear what I'm talking about once you start and NEVER lose patience. (You need a helper too since it would suck to get it off in one piece, and when it lets loose drop it-it happens quickly at the end)

Put lots of tape or carpet protector over the surface to minimize damage if it breaks.
 

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Charles
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Maybe heat it up to soften the glue?
I've read somewhere there is some success wit that. Something like 3 out of 5 mirrors. I have never tried that so I am not sure at what point the glue will start (if at all) getting soft. Obviously I would have to heat up ENTIRE mirror to that temperature. It's large mirror. Let's say I somehow manage to heat the mirror enough to make it to that point it will not help me if top U channel is siliconed to the wall.

Also I am wondering if sudden temperature change can crack the mirror of this size..
 

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Charles
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Listen very hard and you can hear the progress behind the mirror and plan to spend at least an hour with suction cups. You'll hear what I'm talking about once you start and NEVER lose patience. (You need a helper too since it would suck to get it off in one piece, and when it lets loose drop it-it happens quickly at the end)
Thanks rselectric1, I was thinking to work it from the top if I can get top channel loose. It will be still sitting in bottom channel should it get loose suddenly.

What suction cups are you using if I can ask. I don't have any yet but I think I need some regardless.
 

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Accidental Painter
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2,292 Posts
True that is a rather big mirror to heat up.

Suction cup is sounding better. Any reason other than protecting the counter why you want it out whole? You wanna put it in YOUR bedroom ceiling huh, don't lie (joking)
 

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Thanks rselectric1, I was thinking to work it from the top if I can get top channel loose. It will be still sitting in bottom channel should it get loose suddenly.

What suction cups are you using if I can ask. I don't have any yet but I think I need some regardless.
Usually I have an edge open that I can work from. I rented suction cups once for a large one but I can't remember the brand or anything.

Unless the installer went bat**** crazy with the glue, there is a good chance that the thing will come out fine.

Again, GO extremely SLOW and listen. You'll hear what I'm talking about as it progresses. If you hear the crackling sound, just stand pat until it stops and then pull slightly more. Patience!

Good luck and let us know how it works out!:thumbsup:

EDIT! If the thing does go south on you, resist the urge to save it so you don't accidentally try to grab it and have a shard go through your wrist or something.
 

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Registered
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Try and get behind a corner of it with dental floss, use it to saw through the glue.


I don't know if it works but I've always wanted to try it. I guess you could use a space heater to heat the room and that would help a bit?
 

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Suction cups and pull very slowly. I would also get a buddy to help if there is enough room for two guys. It allows you to keep the mirror straight as you pull and you don't have to stand in front of it. Usually though, it will come out with steady pressure.

Breaking it just make s a big mess and you will never get all the glass slivers cleaned up. The customer will find them in the worst places for months. If you do the break method, run clear contact paper over the whole thing to keep it together instead of letting it go kabloohey.
 

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.....
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Are you sure it's glued?

If there is channel on both top and bottom, my guess would be that it's just sitting in the channel.

Get the suction cups and try to lift up and pull the bottom out of the lower channel.
 

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Talking Head
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5,388 Posts
Cover it with cheap contact paper if you're breaking it to prevent large pieces from falling.

I've never done it but I'd think you could make a couple passes with a diamond blade in a grinder to get a starting place. I'd try breaking off a corner first.
 

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Are you sure it's glued?

If there is channel on both top and bottom, my guess would be that it's just sitting in the channel.

Get the suction cups and try to lift up and pull the bottom out of the lower channel.
My thoughts as well. He may only have a couple dabs of glue, or NONE to deal with.

I am fully guilty of over thinking things on a regular basis too. But it's best to be prepared just in case.

He said it is glued, but there is really no way for him to know this at this point. The channels also serve as trim so my bet is that is there is some glue there too.
 

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Get some suction cups. They help a lot.
 
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Charles
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
To be honest so far I never had any mirror of similar setup that would not be glued but that could be just my luck.

I will definitely get suctions cups if I get the job as I will use them in future.
 
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