So tonight I recieved a call from a friend that has been having car troubles. Her car wouldnt start a few days ago, so a friend of hers offered to put a new starter on it. Of course, she couldnt pass up on free, so she proceeded to let a total idiot wrench on her car to save her some greenbacks. He got the starter on after 2 days of wrenching. Well she picked up the car, and after driving it for about 30 minutes, her battery light came on. She then took her car back to the wanna be shade tree mechanic, and he removed the altenator. They took it to the local Orielleys where it tested bad. So on goes another new shiny part. Well, it was later on that night, her battery light came on once again on the way to her boyfriends house. She called the local idiot, and he informed her to charge her battery on a charger, and then take the battery to have it load tested. After two days of charging it, and it going dead, she finally took followed the advice of the village idiot. She bought a new battery and thought all was golden, only to have a familiar light on the dash shining her in the face only an hour later. Finally she breaks down and calls me. She tells me all the parts she has put on her car, and tries to rationalize all of these parts going bad in a matter of days to me. Of course, Im not buying it. Ive spun a few pairs of vise grips in my lifetime!! By the time i get to her house, their isnt much daylight left, and she needs the car running ASAP. As im jacking the car up to inspect the starter, and cracking jokes about Joe blow, she metions a wire that he said something about. I crawl up under the car to inspect the selnoid, and immediatly see the wire in question. After tracing the harness it was, i see that the bundle runs to the altenator. I thought to myself, could this be the charging wire that isnt hooked up? No, it cant be. That would be red and this wire had green insulation covering it. After removing the heat shielding , i notice about 9 inches up, it has a but connector that attaches it to a red 8 guage wire. Well not having a multimeter handy, or even a test light, i rig up a small interior light bulb with speaker wire, and connect it to the wire and then to a ground. She starts the car, and instantly we have an extra hood lamp glowing. Well, then I get a back story on this mysterious wire. First Joe blow thought it was a ground wire after installing the new starter, and he hooked it to the engine block. After the new altenator, he decided to tape it up and just let it hang. Thats when I explained to her, he had fried her alternator by doing that, but also in the process of intelligent troubleshooting procedures, incurred her the cost of a new battery. 219 dollars later, not including the starter, and 18 dollars out of my pocket for new connectors and some additional wiring, she now has a running car again. Its not quite the same as it was before this wanna be shade tree mechanic, as he jacked the motor up to far creating exhaust leaks, and also some how breaking the engine oil dipstick. After it was all said and done, she spent as much as having a competent mechanic to fix her car, not to mention the several days her car was down from this a$$clown. I left her with the words of wisdom, that free cheap labor, sometimes cost as much, or more in the long run.