Last weekend we had our first warm weather up here in the Finger Lakes. My girlfriend wanted to be able to put down the top on her 2005 PT Cruiser convertible, but for a few months now the power windows and power top have not been working. She was going to take it to the shop, but I said, it may just be a fuse. I looked up the owners manual online, then drove the car to an auto parts shop and replaced the circuit breaker in the fusebox under the steering column, because it controls the power windows. The two passenger side windows started working but not the others. So I bought a fuse tester and tested all the fuses in the dashboard fusebox. They were all fine. I drove the car some more, and couldn’t figure out why the other windows wouldn’t work. At one point I stopped but forgot to turn the engine off. I pulled some of the fuses out and plugged them back in, one by one. When I pulled one of them out, the engine stopped. I thought “uh-oh,” then turned the ignition key to off and replaced the fuse. When I started the car again the engine light was on. I drove home (about 12 miles). I looked up stuff about the engine light on line and learned that after three trips, if everything is okay, the engine light will go out. That is exactly what happened. So I thought everything was okay except that I hadn’t solved the window problem.
Two or three days later, my girlfriend got in the car to go to work in the morning. The car started but the engine light was on, and as she backed up out of her driveway the engine stopped. It wouldn’t start again. The starter would just make a ratchety sound. We both figured my experiment with the fuses must have done something. I took the car (by tow truck) to a mechanic, and he didn’t see how the fuses could be the problem. It turned out that the starter was bad and had burned out the battery. So I paid to have the starter replaced and a new battery put in. But when we picked the car up, he said what I’d done had nothing to do with the problem. He said the starter had probably been bad for some time, and it was just a coincidence that the car broke down a couple of days after I fiddled with the fuses. Now I’m convinced he’s right, and my girlfriend is just convinced that he’s wrong. Meanwhile, I’m out $415 unless I can prove that my actions had nothing to do with the problem. Can anyone out there settle this?