Medicine Cabinet Headache

Back in December of 2017, as part of our two bathroom remodel, we bought two of these cabinets, installed, as it turned out, back to back in the separating wall of the bathrooms. Now 5 years later, the hall bath cabinet’s backside mirror has separated from the cabinet on it’s left edge and is currently only held by the right edge’s double stick tape! I found in HD’s reviews where another buyer had the same problem, and like me long past the 1 year warranty, was told to use construction adhesive to reattach it. To do that and not have squeeze out sets unlikely… So I’m looking at adhesives, today’s a holiday, so I didn’t try to call the Customer Service line, tomorrow will give it a shot… Can’t find my vacuum grabber, uses on computer screen removal, so ordered a pair from Amazon, be here tomorrow… May be able to grip, pull back into position, adding dabs of glass adhesive just before it… That they used 1/4" wide double stick tape on a pricey cabinet like these is irritating… I left a grumpy review, FWIW at, where we bought these… If I take the cabinet out, I can add strong, gaffer’s tape on this one and maybe reach through and add some from the back, to the other cabinet as they line up, just offset vertically as I made the Master bath’s vanity higher, kitchen counter height…

For a better idea of the setup, I added the sketch below that I gave my contractor, but in the end, I laid it all out on the wall in my spare time. Also the other bathroom, so I knew everything would fit… (We did not pay that $549 price for the cabinet, $367, but still pricey.)

You can put it back together with aspirin.
OK, that probably won’t work well, but the headache will be gone. :slight_smile:

Actually, I’d use something like liquid nails. They probably make a version just for mirrors.


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I was going to try to repair to with our removing the cabinet, first, but yes, if I have to take it out, maybe only need a couple spots to hold it… The gaffer tape came to mind as I was writing this up, so that would mean less chance of making a mess…

Only have some 81 mg of aspirin, likely not strong enough…

OK, I have a couple of suction grips (used for windows) and I would probably use one to pull the back into position, spot glue with a hot glue gun (like tack welding) then use some sort of bead of adhesive all the way around the pulled out part.

Let set completely, then pop off the hot glue tacks and fill in with more adhesive if it needed it. I’d try to run it like a bead of caulk, neatly.

Maybe if I saw it in person I’d have different thoughts, but that’s what comes to mind.

Plan is to try to pull it back in position, but using a piece of tape, when I pulled on in, it was hanging on something, maybe just something in the cabinet, hopefully… I had ordered another suction jobbers, but canceled just now as I found the one I had…

I do have a hot glue gun but I’m hoping, now, that I might be able to pull it back in place, if the original double stick tape is still ‘grabby’, it would be nice to still remove and reenforce this and the other cabinet… without breaking or chipping any of the mirrors… With our re-gluing or reenforcing, I hesitate to put any pressure on the back from inside, such as cleaning up a bit when done…

(DW won’t let me tear it out today, because this is the week our cleaning lady comes, mustn’t make a mess!)

That sounds familiar. Clean the whole house the day before the cleaning lady comes. Makes a lot of sense. Why not?


I would not bet on hot melt holding metal or glass. Sure you can make a physical stop with hot melt - but I would not expect it to hold long term.

If I am understanding things correctly, I would consider breaking into the drywall above (and/or) below the two cabinets and wedging something between the two cabinet backs. Maybe expanding insulating foam – you have a lot of square inches, so you really don’t need much actual crush strength.

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Nope, not breaking through the drywall, this was a complete remodel, many, many $$$'s invested over more than a month in 2017.

The cabinets are fully framed in, 4 screws hold each in place, so other than their weight, shouldn’t be a problem to remove, I just want to secure the back mirror while removing the cabinet so it doesn’t get broken… If it does, the local glass shop will sell me a replacement but I think I can avoid that…

Once out, a dab or two of adhesive, plus adding gaffer’s tape will completely secure it and while that shared wall is opened, I can add more gaffer’s tape to the other, undamaged cabinet behind this one that’s bugging us.

Minimal damage is best… As it is, I did have to carefully open the wall a little in the Master Bath to get some baking behind a towel bar, then patching, matching the texture, and paint was a bit traumatic…

All we’d need would be for that foam to react with the mirror silvering, or tear it up if the cabinets ever need to be moved at a later date…

Only thing for now is to call Koehler, see what they suggest, maybe they’ll replace the unit, but I won’t know until I call in…

Thanks for considering possibilities…


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Is there really any value to having a mirror behind the shelves? I can’t think of anything I’ve ever used a bathroom mirror for that I would want to work that way. Which, in my mind, says that if you removed it you could fabricate a new back panel out of something other than glass, perhaps even fasten it with something in addition to tape or adhesive.

(OT aside: I grew up in a post WW-II 1950 Cape-Cod tract house with one bathroom. The medicine cabinet had a slot inside, in the back, to accept old razor blades, which ended up inside the wall. I don’t know if my father used it.)

Funny you should mention that. We have a full bath and a half bath that share a common wall. Each bathroom had medicine cabinets with the little slot inside. When the boys were younger I told them the slot was for used razors.

Fast forward to this past August and we remodeled the larger bathroom. When they demo’d the wall between the two bathrooms you would not believe how many double edged razors were found between those studs.



Same here, and in those early days, used that slot and from remodels discovered they simply fell into the wall cavity. Today, disposables end up in the recycle bin, but I don’t use the old replaceable blades other than the ones in box cutters. Different times, indeed…

DW is OK if I used a simple whiteboard as a back, but this unit came with mirrors there, so back they go… As long as I get it out in one piece, I’m sure I can secure it…

I did talk to Koehler this morning, but she had to fix, and I am 5 years out, 4 past the warranty… She did offer 50% off their List price to replace it, but evidently her options are limited. That 50% off List matches what we paid via our contractor’s discount, so considering, it was a fair offer… No freebies, but a pretty deep discount…

An additional issue is being sure that it is EXACTLY the same model, and that the model didn’t have any changes over the years. Especially slight changes in dimension, or changes made to better accommodate steel studs instead of wood ones.

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Well, a while since the problem appeared, but I did finally get to it, went well, 4 square (Roberton) screws, after temprary internal tape to be dure the back mirror stayed in place, and out it came. Taped it, added tape to the other cabinet I could see, but it was too snug on one side and the bottom to slip tape in, and the top edge was out of reach as I’ve raised the Master bath vanity & medicine cabinet up several inches, easier on my tall guy’s back… About kitchen counter height…

One less problem…
(Rough opening)

(Completed, replaced)

(Tape applied)

Tah Dah!


Nice work.

That middle picture, withe mirror inside the cabinet, well it reminded me of something.

Funny stuff … They are offset, vertically as seen in the top photo… As it is, they transmit sound really well, maybe better with the gap closed now… DW is happy, I’m happy!!

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I hope the tape lasts, but if it does not, you might think about a few drops of epoxy – certainly a formulation that has lower viscosity. I am pretty confident if you had a total of 10 short (1 cm) bonds between the mirror and the metallic sides the mirror would be held in the metal frame.

Did you see any evidence the the OEM method to hold the mirror in place?

Factory used a narrow, maybe 1/4"-3/8", double stick foam tape, it held on the one edge, so the mirror stayed in place when I removed the cabinet… It sets in a recess, so once laod on its face it was right where it needed to be… I had used some short bits of the tape on the inside to insure it would stay in place as I removed it… Once back in place, some glass cleaner, replaced the shelves, etc…

I didn’t even try to remove the back mirror, didn’t want to disturb that one edge, and possibly the other edges reconnected once pressed back into their space…