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I took my car (1995 Mitsubishi Galant LS) to a repair shop to have a new starter installed since the original starter died. A few days later the car had an extremely rough idle and the valves were quite noisy. Shortly thereafter, the car would start for a few minutes and then shut itself down. It would no longer start.

I got the car towed to the dealer who found out the car was not creating a spark. They replaced the distributor with a new one only to find out it still did not create a spark. Ultimately, the dealer noticed the housing for the starter was defective and it was basically hanging on by one bolt as opposed to two to the engine. The dealer installed a new starter and another distributor and the car started but the timing was now off so they corrected that issue also.

The shop that installed the defective starter doesn't believe it could have damaged the distributor and thrown off the car's timing. The dealer advised current flows from the starter to the distributor in one direction and that the starter reversed the current and damaged the distributor. They also advised when the starter threw itself into reverse, it caused the car's timing to be off.

Could someone confirm this and maybe explain how it is possible for a starter to damaged a car in this manner if current flows in the opposite direction?

My repairs were quite expensive and I may be forced to take legal action against the shop that installed the defective starter if they don't compensate me.

Thanks in advance.
 

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Hmmm sounds kinda weird, i assume your timing belt may have been on it's last legs and it threw it self off. As for the starter hanging by one bolt that's just sloppy work.
 

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Or a small other possibility is that during teh replacement of the battery , a short could have occured as in touching wront battery posts are the positive onlee being disconnected while replacing the starter and the pos grounding out to the negative terminal or engine bloack , causing a short that affected the ECU . Im just assuming since yu had sumthing electrical done (starter) where there is a possibility for a short happening . But there is good merit to wut is said about the timing belt also , if after the replacment of the starter if it was on its last legs and the belt had "jumped" a few notches in that time it would cause valve clatter and performance issues, altho lots of valve clatter usually if frum timing being overlly advanced , . Either there is an ECU or Timing belt issue. But the belt can easily be seen by removing the upper portion of the timing cover retaining screws to inspect if its broken
 

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I dont think it would be the timing. Although I usually change my starter myself and I dont remove anything close to any belts. Reason being that the starter is under the intake manifold (on US 2.4L) so there is NO reason that should have been moved or tampered wit. It could be that your balance shaft belt snapped...it is commonly overlookd and will destroy an engine! I know I have killed 2 before I had one built without that balance shaft. Either way it sounds like you need a new engine. If you did take it to some one and they removed anything else besides the intake manifold...call them on their ignorance and question as to why they went that route! Might get your car fixed on their dime! Good luck
 

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Totally id question them about their mistaes. As he says i would not understand about the starter affecting the timing . If ..and this is a bit far out tho , for sum odd reason they removed the distributor , to get betetr clearance to ...well iono , and then reinstalled the distributor , with the timing far off , upon starting it....hmm nm that seems just really crazy. the distributor goes onlee one way into the the rear of the cam , But they could have the timing adjusted a bit for , or a bit off frum its almost middle position on the adjustment . This can cause valve train noise if the timing is quite a bit advanced. There is a list of things that pop in my head but they should not have been that crazy to have dun those things. The starter leaning could have , not most likelly but anythin is possible a short , and the control module in the distributor could have started to act up and over advancing the timing and then failed. IONO . They actually did sumthing that caused this issue.
 
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