Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 Review

Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700

1110.50
(Rated: 3.6 / 5) Review by Frank Lowery
Noise11100
Ease of Assembly11110
Maneuverability1110.50
Balance And Handling11110
Result Quality1110.50

When winter starts gearing up and snow storms are dropping deep accumulations in your area, you want a snow blower in your garage that you can count on to provide the kind of power and performance you need to be able to tackle big, tough jobs quickly and efficiently. Gas powered single stage snow blowers are the best machines out there on the market today for keeping large paved driveways clear of heavy snowfall during the winter. But not all single stage snow blowers are created equal. Some have wider intake clearances or higher snow cut depths than others. Some have bigger engines that are able to provide more power to the auger and move a higher capacity of snow per minute than others. The best kind of single stage snow blower combines high clearance width and snow cut depth with a powerful engine, and it doesn’t have too high a price.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is just the kind of gas powered single stage snow blower that combines all of those design elements and does not have the kind of price tag that will break the bank. This snow blower has an extra wide 21 inch clearance and a super high 13 inch snow cut depth. It also has a very competitive price. In addition to these important features, it is lightweight and compact and has a number of great design notes that make it more ergonomic and easier to use than a lot of similar snow blowers in its size class.

There are a few minor drawbacks to the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 that you should be aware of. Its engine is fairly noisy, and produces enough emissions that it is not CARB compliant. It may have trouble getting through wet, heavier snow. Some of its components are plastic, and its wheels are fairly small. But overall it is a good machine. When it is compared to other single stage snow blowers, it stacks up in just about every major product spec category, although its engine is on the smaller side. But overall this is a solid, powerful snow blower at a great price.

Specifications

review specificationsThe Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is a gas powered single stage snow blower with dimensions of 28.4 x 22.7 x 24.9 inches. It has a push button start and a 4-cycle overhead valve engine with a displacement of 123 cubic centimeters. The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 has a clearing width of 21 inches.

Type Single-Stage
Dimensions 28.4 x 22.7 x 24.9 inches
Start Button push
Engine Manufacturer Yard Machines
Engine 123 cc – OHV
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle
Clearing Width 21 inches
Snow Cut Depth 13 inches
Capacity / Minute Up to 1100 pounds
Throw Distance Up to 25 feet
Drive Manual push
Handle Ergonomic
Chute Control Manual 180°
Wheels Compact wheels
Weight 77 pounds
Warranty 2 years

The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 has a snow cut depth of up to 13 inches, and it can move up to 1100 pounds of snow per minute. It can throw that snow up to 25 feet away. It is a manual push drive and it has an ergonomic handle. Its snow chute can be manually rotated 180 degrees. The snow blower has compact wheels and weighs 77 pounds. It has a 2 year warranty.

Description

review descriptionThe Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is a gas powered single stage snow blower that is designed to reliably handle moderate snow fall in large suburban properties. It has a 4-cycle overhead valve engine that is designed to produce more power in less space; it has a displacement of 123 cubic centimeters but nevertheless is able to power the auger to move up to 1100 pounds of snow per minute. This is about as high of a clearance capacity as you can find on a single stage snow blower today. It can throw that snow up to 25 feet, which is also on the higher end of the range.

The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 has an auger with an extra wide 21 inch clearance, which is also about as big as it gets on single stage snow blowers. This clearance width will allow you to finish clearing a big driveway in as few passes as possible, which will save you a lot of time in the long run and have you back indoors where it’s warm before you even know it. And the snow cut depth on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is a full 13 inches, which again is about as high as it gets on a single stage machine. This height means that even if you live in a region of the country that is prone to lots of heavy snow fall, you will have nothing to worry about with this snow blower in your garage.

Unfortunately, the engine on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 does produce a lot of emissions, which means it will not be compliant with California Air Resources Board regulations on small engine carbon emissions. This means that if you live in any one of the fourteen states that enforce these regulations, you won’t be able to purchase it. Its other drawbacks are all fairly minor and relatively common among single stage snow blowers, though: overall this is a very solid machine.

Pros

review prosThere are several design features that help make the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 one of the better single stage snow blowers in its size class. It has one of the widest clearances you can find on a single stage machine, and a super high 13 inch snow cut depth. It’s lightweight and compact, and it has a great engine. And it offers all of these features at an extremely competitive price.

  1. Extra wide 21 inch clearance : The clearance width on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is as wide as it gets on a single stage snow blower, and it makes it perfect for taking care of suburban lots with two and three car driveways. The extra clearance inches really add up quickly, and reduce the number of passes you have to make by a lot. Fewer passes means less time spent clearing snow from your driveway and more time spent indoors in the warmth of central heating.
  2. Ultra high 13 inch snow cut depth : The snow cut depth on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is also about as high as it gets on a single stage snow blower. The thirteen inch depth is high enough to deal with the average snow fall in just about every state in the Union, and it will certainly be high enough to deal with the kind of snow fall that Midwestern and Southern states get. When a big storm comes, though, you want a higher snow cut depth to ensure you can handle it.
  3. Lightweight and compact : Even with its extra wide clearance and high snow cut depth, the overall dimensions of the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 are not particularly large, and the snow blower does not weigh all that much. The dimensions of the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 are just 28.4 x 22.7 x 24.9 inches, which means it will be easy to find storage space for it in your garage or tool shed and maneuver it in tight spaces in your property. And because it weighs just 77 pounds, just about anyone will have an easy time using it.
  4. Powerful, low maintenance engine : The engine on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is a powerful 4-cycle model with overhead valve design. That means it can pack more power into a smaller space, and it certainly does: the displacement of the engine is just 123 cubic centimeters, yet it has enough power to move 1100 pounds of snow per minute. Because it is a four stroke engine, you will not have to mix gas and oil to keep it running smoothly, and the design of it makes it require less maintenance over the long term.
  5. Very competitive price : The price tag on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is extremely competitive, especially when you compare it to models with similar clearance widths and snow cut depths. With this machine you get all of the power and snow clearing ability you need without having to spend a fortune to get it. That is money you can save for other winter projects in your yard, or else save for gardening purchases once spring comes around again.

The combination of power, a 21 inch clearing width, a 13 inch snow cut depth, and a great price are the four major features you want to find in a single stage snow blower. They ensure you will be prepared for whatever snow storms winter can throw at you without having to spend a lot of money.

Cons

review consThere are a few drawbacks to the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 that I really should mention, although I do not think any of them are so serious as to take away too much from all of the great Pros it offers. A few of them are common to most single stage snow blowers, and the rest are minor annoyances for the most part. Let’s take a look.

  1. May have difficulty with wet, heavy snow : If you are trying to use the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 to clear slushy snow that has been allowed to melt partially and is mostly water, it is going to be a difficult time. Like many single stage snow blowers, this one will tend to struggle with slushy, heavy snow, and will probably not be able to throw it the full 25 feet or get through it as quickly as you’d like. To avoid this, clear snow as soon as possible.
  2. High emissions and not CARB compliant : The engine on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 has a lot of convenient features, but fuel economy or reduced emissions are not among them. As a result, the snow blower will use a lot of gas and high volume of carbon emissions. It also means that it is not compliant with California Air Resources Board regulations for small engine emissions, which limits the number of States it can be purchases in.
  3. The engine is fairly noisy : In addition to producing a high volume of emissions, the engine on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is also fairly noisy. While this is quite common for four-cycle engines, it can still present problems. If you encounter an overnight snow storm that has dropped enough snow that you have to clear your driveway early in the morning before you go to work, you will probably wake up your neighbors if they are still sleeping.
  4. Certain components are plastic and not very durable : A few components on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 are made of plastic, instead of more durable welded or even stamped metal, which means it is not quite as durable as machines made with those materials will be. If you do not subject your snow blower to very rough treatment, I do not think this will present too much of a problem, but I would not try to use this machine commercially or on heavy duty jobs.
  5. Wheels are small and occasionally lock up : The rear wheels on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 are rather small, which may present minor issues with maneuverability. They are small enough that when you try to pull the snow blower backwards, they may tend to lock up on you, forcing you to basically drag the machine back. Because the snow blower only weighs 77 pounds, this is not a huge issue, but it is worth mentioning anyway.

As you can see, there are no Cons in that list that are seriously alarming or do much to take away considerably from all of the outstanding Pros the snow blower has to offer. The most unfortunate one, in my opinion, is the fact that the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is not CARB compliant, because so many consumers will miss out on the outstanding performance it has to offer.

Product Comparison

review comparisonWhen the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is stacked up against similar single stage gas powered snow blowers, in virtually every category it stands out as one of the best models available on the market today. It has a big clearing width; high snow cut depth, a high capacity per minute. The following table compares the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 with the Poulan Pro PR621ES and the Toro Power Clear 621R.

  Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700Yard Machines
31A-2M1E700
Poulan Pro PR621ESPoulan Pro
PR621ES
Toro Power Clear 621RToro Power Clear
621R
Type Single-Stage Single-Stage Single-Stage
Dimensions 28.4 x 22.7 x 24.9 inches 26.5 x 31.2 x 24.5 inches 22 x 29 x 23 inches
Start Button push Button push Button push
Engine Manufacturer Yard Machines Poulan Pro Toro
Engine 123 cc – OHV 208 cc – OHV 163 cc
2-cycle / 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle 4-cycle
Clearing Width 21 inches 21 inches 21 inches
Snow Cut Depth 13 inches 13 inches 10 inches
Capacity / Minute Up to 1100 pounds Up to 1100 pounds Up to 900 pounds
Throw Distance Up to 25 feet Up to 25 feet Up to 25 feet
Drive Manual push Manual push Manual push
Handle Ergonomic Ergonomic Ergonomic
Chute Control Manual 180° Manual 180° Manual 180°
Wheels Compact wheels Compact wheels Compact wheels
Weight 77 pounds 70 pounds 95 pounds
Warranty 2 years 2 years 2 years

The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 has the smallest engine of the three snow blowers, but at the same time it has one of the highest clearance capacities per minute, at 1100 pounds. Along with the Poulan Pro, it has a 13 inch snow cut depth and 21 inch wide clearance. All three snow blowers can throw snow 25 feet. The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is the second lightest and has one of the smallest overall footprints.

Conclusion

review conclusionThere are a few areas that are particularly important to pay attention to when you are shopping for a new single stage snow blower. You want a machine that has a wide clearance and high snow cut depth, and you want it to have a powerful engine that can move a lot of snow at once. Let’s look at the Pros and Cons of the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 one more time.

Conclusion Pros

  1. Extra wide 21 inch clearance.
  2. Ultra high 13 inch snow cut depth.
  3. Lightweight and compact.
  4. Powerful, low maintenance engine.
  5. Very competitive price.

The clearance on the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is as wide as it gets on a single stage snow blower in its size class, and the same is true for the 13 inch snow cut depth. It has a powerful, low maintenance engine, and it manages to provide all of that in a small, lightweight package.

Conclusion Cons

  1. May have difficulty with wet, heavy snow.
  2. High emissions and not CARB compliant.
  3. The engine is fairly noisy.
  4. Certain components are plastic and not very durable.
  5. Wheels are small and occasionally lock up.

Most of these drawbacks are fairly common to single stage gas powered snow blowers, and I do not think that any of them are serious enough to take away too much from all of the great Pros the snow blower has to offer. For the right kind of job, the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is overall a fairly solid snow blower.

Final Word

When you have a broad suburban driveway to keep clear of snow all winter long, you want a snow blower in your garage that you can depend on to take care of whatever kind of snow fall Mother Nature can throw your way. A gas powered single stage snow blower like the Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is going to get the job done the right way every time. This machine is designed to be powerful and efficient, and it will help you quickly clear snow from your driveway. It has the kind of powerful engine you can count on. Its extra wide clearance and ultra high snow cut depth mean you will be able to clear even the heaviest snow fall from your driveway in fewer passes and less time. It requires very little maintenance to keep it running well. And it offers all of these great features at a very competitive price.

Best Price

review pricesIt is important to make sure you are never sacrificing quality for a lower price tag. Doing so will almost always just wind up costing you more money in the long run, as cheaper products that are not well made will inevitably break down or underperform. But every once in a while, you come across a machine that offers high performance and reliability, but still has a competitive price. The Yard Machines 31A-2M1E700 is just such a machine. It has the kind of excellent components and high quality design and parts you need to keep your driveway clear all winter long for years to come, and it is much less expensive than the vast majority of single stage snow blowers.

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