If you’re renting a U-Haul truck for the first time, you may notice that these vehicles can get pretty big — e.g., U-Haul’s biggest rental is a twenty-six-foot (8 m) box model. Because of their size, U-Haul trucks don’t exactly offer the best rear vision from the driver’s seat. Therefore, you may need to adjust the mirrors as necessary.
Here are the steps to adjust U-Haul mirrors:
- Locate the door lever for tilting the mirrors.
- Adjust the mirror depending on its type.
- If the mirror gets stuck, unstick it accordingly.
- Do a mirror check as needed.
As you can see, adjusting U-Haul mirrors is a pretty straightforward process for the most part. However, you may encounter complications along the way, such as differences in the specific mechanisms of different models. Still, if you’re having any sort of trouble adjusting your U-Haul mirrors, I’m sure you can find a solution or two in the article below.
1. Locate the Door Lever for Tilting the Mirrors
Looking at a U-Haul truck for the first time, it’s easy to think that there’s no way the mirrors can move so easily. If that’s your concern, rest assured that your worries are quite unfounded.
Most U-Haul mirrors tilt and swivel just fine with minimal effort. Sometimes it’s not even necessary to touch the glass.
That’s because U-Haul trucks come with a handy lever on the door that tilts the glass on a swivel. Most of the time, this is enough. However, the process can still be a bit tricky for beginners.
Can You Adjust U-Haul Mirrors?
You can adjust U-Haul mirrors, though the box trucks do not have power buttons to do it. Instead, the driver needs to move them by hand using a lever. Moving U-Haul truck mirrors by hand can be easy or hard, depending on how long it has been since the mirror was last moved.
If it’s been a while since the mirror was last moved, the lever mechanisms may have accumulated debris or corrosion — both of which can get in the way of their proper functioning. (I’ll get into how to unstick “stuck” mirrors later.)
2. Adjust the Mirror Depending on Its Type
Before you drive, you should make sure you tilt both mirrors until the truck’s tail-light is just visible on the lower edge of the glass. From your normal driving position, the tail-light should “peek” from the corner a tiny bit.
This setting provides the safest view of the road behind you. You’ll also get a decent idea of the traffic in the far lane. (I use the word “decent” because, in a box truck, the driver must take what they can get.)
The best way to adjust U-Haul mirrors depends on the type of mirrors you’re adjusting. Regardless, you should make sure you get the optimal view from your normal driving position as I’ve explained above.
Without further ado, let’s get into the steps for adjusting flat mirrors and convex mirrors on a U-Haul truck. I also explained in this article How To Lock U-Haul Truck.
How To Adjust a U-Haul Truck’s Flat Mirror
- Get a friend to work as a spotter as you adjust your mirror. When you have a spotter, you can keep potential blind spots to a minimum.
- From the driver’s seat, rotate the mirrors until the top and bottom parts of the truck’s rear are visible at the very edge of the reflection
- Tilt the mirror to bring the truck’s tail-light to the bottom edge of the reflection. Get it as close as you can without making it disappear. The rear corner of the truck should be visible at the mirror’s edge, while the horizon should dominate everything else.
How To Adjust a U-Haul Truck’s Convex Mirror
The larger U-Haul trucks come with convex mirrors that can also be adjusted.
- As with the flat mirror adjustment, bring along a spotter if possible. You can choose to work without a spotter; however, you’re more likely to miss any blind spots.
- Tilt the convex mirror as far away from the truck as possible without concealing the edge of the truck.
- Make sure both the edge of the truck and the entire adjacent lane are visible in the reflection.
- Have your spotter drive by as if he were passing you on the road. As the spotter’s car vanishes from the flat mirror, it should pop right up in the convex mirror. When you’ve got this, you’ve hit the sweet spot for maximum operational safety.
Want to actually see how to adjust a truck’s mirrors instead of just reading about it? Check out this YouTube video:
3. If the Mirror Gets Stuck, Unstick It Accordingly
Assuming everything goes well, you should only have to follow Steps 1 and 2 above. However, there may be times when your mirrors get stuck for some reason. In that case, you’ll need to take another step — that is, unstick the mirror without accidentally knocking it off your truck.
Stuck mirrors can be loosened up by gently wiggling the frame or the glass from side to side. You might hear a few squeaks of protest, but the mirror should soon surrender. If it doesn’t, use a bit of lubricant on the joints.
Putting some muscle into the job may help, but be careful not to break the mirror. If you do, U-Haul may consider it a “Customer Caused” problem and charge you extra for repairs. Should the worst comes to worst and the mirror really won’t move despite your best efforts, let the rental agency know ASAP so they can deal with it accordingly.
4. Do a Mirror Check As Needed
Of course, your mirrors aren’t going to stay in the same position throughout your journey. Even the slightest bump in the road can knock them out of alignment. Keeping the truck’s mirrors in their correct position is essential for your and the other motorists’ safety.
Aside from keeping an eye on the mirrors while you drive, do a mirror check at every stop to make sure the mirrors haven’t slipped out of alignment. After all, it never hurts to take precautions.
Adjusting a U-Haul truck’s mirrors isn’t rocket science. It’s merely a matter of hitting that sweet spot — the spot that shows as much of the road as possible without blinding the driver to what’s near the truck’s tail-lights.