A mist free mirror
GeneralitiesI don't know if you are like me, but I feel bored when after my shower I need to dry the mirror many times to see my face for shaving (or make-up for girls and ladies).
How-to solve this delicate problem ? First of all, see what's happen: taking a shower make the bathroom full of hot mist. When this mist find a colder surface (like a mirror for example), it distill on it.
The solution is so to protect the mirror from mist.
It can be made by at least two methods:
- By rubbing a piece of dry soap on the mirror (when it is dry too), so that the mist is drained along the surface. But you need to make it again regularly.
- By making mirror as hot as the mist, or maybe more, so that the mist could not distill on it. Typically a hot bathroom is about 25°C or 77°F, so having a mirror at about 30°C or 86°F will be ok.
It's the second solution that I have choose. The idea is to make a mirror warmed up, at back, by an electrical resistance who maintain it at about 30°C or 86°F.
What you need
- A mirror: yes of course, take one with its back free (no plastic, wood or anything else on it). The shape doesn't matter.
- Resistive wire: not easy to find, you can try electronic components dealers, hardware, paint stores or plastic arts shops. This wire is sometimes called "constantan".
- Aluminium tape for fireplace or chimney: it's a kind of large sticking tape, heat resistant. You can find it in hardware store.
- A piece of styrofoam: of about 1 cm or 0.5 inch thick, to protect from heat the wall where your mirror will be.
- A power source: Anything that could give you about 15 volts, no matter AC or DC. I use an old PC power supply, and it's 12 volts output, throught a switch. For PC power supply recycling, see this site (in French only).
- Miscellanous : Electric wire, glue, electric clip and a hook to hang the mirror when it will be over.
Once Method is choosed, you can do the mirror as you like. Here is my personal way.
|Well clean the back of the mirror to get perfect tape sticking. To well work, put the mirror on an old wall-to-wall carpet or a towel.|
|Make a path with resistive wire on the back of the mirror, as regularly as possible. The wire should exceed a bit from the mirror, at beginning and end, to be in the electric clip. A bit like on this drawing.|
|Stick wire using pieces of aluminium tape. You sould not get wire crossover.|
|Once all the wire is sticked, stick the stryrofoam on the back.|
|The best way is to stick a piece of styrofoam bigger than the mirror, and then egalize all around the mirror using a cutter or better a filicutter.|
|Detail of cutting.|
|Put the end and start of wire in the electric clip.|
This could be made bofore or after sticking styrofoam.
|Mirror itself is over, you just need to stick a hook on top to hang it later (I use and old piece of plastic).|
|Plug then electric clip to power source to switch on and start to heat.|
An usual mirror after a good shower...
The mist free mirror in action !
|Both side by side (for the photo): note the mist on the big one and no mist on the small one.|
That's it, it's over. For you now the pleasure to see your face in a dry mirror even in a hamam or after a shower at 50°C or 122°F...
Second versionAfter a year of daily use, I've try to enhance the mirror with a bit more sophisticated version. Here is the technical changes:
|Pc power supply is replaced by a DELL laptop power supply which produce about 20 volts, which is much more efficient than PC power supply. I have just added a swith before main power.|
ConclusionWell, you can certainly enhance again by yourself, here is some ideas, just in case :
- Adding a heating/temperature regulation, to stop power when mirror has reached 30°C
- A calcul should certainly be made between resitance of wire and electric power.
- If you have a big mirror in your bathroom why don't make it a mist free AND heating mirror ? The main difficulty will probably be to put a very long resistive wire on mirror already in place. It's too bad that we have no news of this famous heating paint.
Last modified on: December 17th 2013
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