can water damage my starter after being submerged in water for an hour.
Wouldn’t surprise me a bit.
Oh yeah. Starters aren’t sealed to be water tight. Water isn’t good for electrical parts in general and starters are no different. A starter is full of windings, contacts, bearings, and all the above don’t take well to the corrosive effects of water. Water will also wash away protective lubricants inside the starter.
If the starter dries out completely it might still function, but it’s long term life has been compromised. If you try to use it when it is still wet it might just short out completely and then you get nothing, or that nice whiff of ozone smell.
Was your starter or your entire car submerged in water? If it was the car, call your insurance company and start shopping for a new one.
How deep was the water?
If the whole car was in water, and if your symptom is that the starter won’t operate, then it is more likely to be problems with the electronics, than with the stater motor itself. I would expect that the starter’s life has been shortened, but not that it is dead yet (unless we are talking about salt water). However, the PCM and other electronics will stop working the second they get wet. After they dry out, they may go back to working for a while, but it doesn’t look good long term.
No tardis, it doesn’t look good. From hydra-lock to wet ECMs to water in the transmission, the cost of the starter is chicken feed to what it will take if water was over the center line of the wheels.