2000 LeSabre tape deck E10 errors/replacement options

I would like to use a wired or bluetooth cassette adapter in my tape deck, but every adapter I put in gets ejected after a few seconds with an E10 error showing on the display. According to the manual, this means the tape is too tight, but when I took apart one of the adapters and fiddled with anything that might simulate the tension of the tape, too little tension got it ejected with an E11 “Tape is broken” error.

Is there a fix for this short of pulling the stereo and getting a new one?

For that matter, I’ve noticed that the area around the tape deck has a separate cover (see image, same model but not mine), and I’m wondering, since I pretty much only use it for adapters, if it might be possible to just replace the deck with an aftermarket aux in or bluetooth and leave the radio and CD alone. Flailing about in searches all I’ve found is some DIY hacks that are out of my league.

“Is there a fix for this short of pulling the stereo and getting a new one?”

Probably not. You can either use the radio and CD player or replace the unit. Repairing this unit is not cost effective. Try a salvage yard for a used unit or visit crutchfield.com and check out their website for a new radio.

Does it play an actual cassette? If so it’s probably a compatibility problem with adapters.

I know I should check with an actual cassette, but I haven’t yet. I have a couple of real cassettes, but I never want to listen to them so they’re not handy on the rare occasion I’m thinking about this.

Could use a different kind of adapter: one that inputs from your desired source and transmits an FM signal to your radio?

I think you may have to do something different in order to do what you want to do. It seems the tape player monitors the tape tension. Along with that, the unit is one piece and you can’t remove just the cassette portion. Here is one alternative that will fit your vehicle if you want to try it.

Maybe the cassette just needs a good cleaning! Look for one that you moisten pads with usually denatured alcohol.