Easy tips for hanging and cleaning mirrors

Avoid seven years of bad luck from breaking a mirror by hanging it properly. Keep all the mirrors in your house hanging and shining bright with these simple tips.

Easy tips for hanging and cleaning mirrors

Hanging a mirror

  • Large framed mirrors are heavy and should be hung on battens (wood slats). Make an interlocking batten from a length of wood approximately five centimetres (two inches) × two centimetres (one inch) and slightly shorter than the width of the mirror. Cut along its length at an angle. Fix one part of the batten to the wall and the other to the back of the mirror so that they slot together when the mirror is hung.
  • Sliding mirror clips are used for frameless mirrors. Use fixed clips at the bottom and then two sliding clips at the top, and at the side, too, for large mirrors. Position clips so the screws are hidden and they can slide in and out for fitting or removing the mirror.
  • Use mirror screws to hang a mirror with screw holes. Use plastic spacers between the back of the mirror and the wall to allow air to circulate and avoid cracking the mirror as you tighten the screws. Don't attempt to drill holes in a mirror yourself; this is a job for a glazier.

Cleaning a mirror for a clear view

Don't just treat your mirror like a pane of glass. A store-bought glass cleaner, squirted liberally onto the mirror, can seep around the edges and affect the backing, oxidizing the silver and making it black, brittle and flaky. It can also damage the frame. Spray cleaning fluids onto a lint-free cloth and use this to clean and polish the surface, or try these household tips.

  • Use a chamois leather, dipped in a solution of 15 millilitres (one tablespoon) white vinegar in 2.5 litres (10 cups) of warm water and squeezed out.
  • If hairspray has become caked onto the mirror, wipe it off with a little rubbing alcohol on a soft cloth.
  • Avoid scratchy abrasive cleaners and acidic ones that can damage the reflective backing.

That's it, folks! Follow these simple tips to make sure your mirrors stay shiny and don't fall down and break.

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