Setting side mirrors to blindspot

I heard on the show, a couple of months ago, that tom, I believe, sets his mirrors to see his blind spot rather than looking down the side of the vehicle, as is traditional. I decided to try this. I did not like it but gave it a couple of days to get used to it. I finally determined that it was totally BOGUS when I had to back up and could not see the back the vehicle to determine if I was going to smash it or not. was he serious? I lived in Plymouth, mass. for awhile and drove in boston occaisionally, so I know that you have to use reverse in new England too. does any one else set their mirrors this way?

I have done it for years, and it has saved me from a few, “incidents”, with people who were hanging out in the traditional “blind spot”. If my mirrors had been adjusted the way that you prefer, I might have had a collision with these blind-spot riders.

Incidentally, you really need to turn and look backward when reversing, rather than just relying on your mirrors to tell you where the back of the car is…

well, I have to respectfully disagree with every thing you said. it is very easy to turn your head 5 or 10 degrees to see your blind spot. it is impossible to see the bottom of the rear of your vehicle from inside your vehicle unless you stick your head out the window or open your door, both of which are dangerous and awkward when reversing. also when carrying cargo in a car or especially a truck or van, the view from the rearview mirror is often blocked, leaving your side mirrors as the only option to see things directly behind you

I do both–turning my head and using properly positioned mirrors.
If you don’t like doing things this way, that is your choice, but I can tell you that positioning your mirrors in this way is taught nowadays in Defensive Driving classes.

as you say, …to each his own. I would be curious as to the opinions of any professional drivers out there.

The way that was recommended on the show is also how the NHSTA recommends setting your side view mirrors. I use this method and like it very much, and I don’t have a problem backing up either, thats what the inside rear view mirror is for.

BTW, I have had my neck broken twice so turning my head is not an option, I rely solely on the mirrors.

I was a professional driver, and took many company sponsored driving safety courses. A few were taught by former racers and NASCAR drivers. The technique for setting mirrors on a standard sedan is to lean as far as you can to the right and set the passenger mirror so you can see the side of the car. To set the drivers side mirror you put your head against the side window glass and set the mirror so you can see the side of the car. When the driver’s head is in the normal position you will see the blind spot(s).

If you need to see down the side of the car for backing up; either adjust the mirror so you can see, or move your head to the side so you can see the side of the car. If you drive on freeway frequently you need to adjust the mirrors to see the “blind spot”. If you are driving on a 2 lane rural highway seeing the blind spot isn’t as important. On multi-lane roads you need to see the blind spot or you risk and accident when you change lanes.

I don’t expect the OP to buy into this, but hope that other driver’s will realize the importance of setting the side mirrors correctly.

If 1/8 of the mirror is taken up by the side of the car, you will have a wider view of traffic around you, if 7/8 of the mirror is taken up by the side of the car you will have no better view of the rear end.

I like that method when highway driving but do not like it in city traffic. I also do not like it with large side mirrors. It makes it seem like I’m viewing into the next county.

It’s all personal choice but it makes sense.
Why see the same car in all three mirrors? As the vehicle exits the rear view it appears in your side view and then as it exits the side view it appears in your peripheral.

Actually it work well in the city environment as well as on the freeway. The best setup is the way the Japanese do their mirrors. The mirrors are mounted on the fenders about 6" back from the headlights. It looks goofy but it gives a commanding view all around the vehicle. Both mirrors are slightly convex. It takes a little getting used to but once you do, you can cut off people with inches to spare with confidence.

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Certain American vehicles of old had mirrors mounted forward on fenders also.

I’ve tried to make the switch to the “new” mirror settings and quickly switched back, mostly because of the difficulties they introduce backing up. Also, you can’t glance in the side mirrors and determine your vehicle’s/trailer’s precise positioning within the lane (especially useful in narrowed lanes, unfamiliar vehicles, and RHD vehicles.)

Uncertain how “precise” one can be without the sides of the vehicle as reference points…kind of like aiming a rifle without including the F and R sights as references.

well, I can " buy into" setting my mirrors “correctly”, …and the next time I m on the race track I ll set them to my blind spot. but as I often have to back into spaces with only inches to spare on either side of my truck, and as my inside mirror is often obstructed by cargo, I believe the “correct” way for me to set my mirrors is as barkydog suggested, about one eighth of the mirror showing the side of my vehicle. it seems the “correct” way differs by person and situation. if you have a hard time turning your head or are on the race track the correct way may be to set your mirrors to the blind spot but for others, and in other environments, it may not be so. I ll certainly try to keep an open mind and listen and learn. none of us are all knowing