Yes, we get it. We are giving a review of the Yarbo S1 and yet we haven’t had the chance to give it a run in the snow yet. We hear ya, person who left a negative comment to that effect on our YouTube video.
Someday soon, we do expect to get a good snowfall near our Westerville, Ohio, headquarters. At that point, we will certainly create a video and a blog post for you about our experience. But as soon as we got our hands on the highly-anticipated Yarbo, we wanted to be able to give users a review on as much as we could as soon as we could.
In our last blog post, we gave a review of the Yarbo robot in general. Today, we turn to the Yarbo S1 (aka the Yarbo Snow Blower) specifically. At this point, of course, we are reviewing all the features that we could test without snow–which, it turns out, is a lot!
Check out our thoughts in the video below. Otherwise, keep reading for a summary of our Yarbo S1 review.
Yarbo S1 Specs
Of course, we always want to start with some of the basics when we review any products. After all, those specs can tell you right away if you are dealing with something of high quality. And of course, those specs can help you know if a product is the right fit for you.
The Yarbo S1 is a two-stage design. It has a 21” cleaning width and a 12” intake height. Yarbo S1 can throw snow anywhere from 6 to 40 ft. The chute can turn 180° and can rise up as high as 45°.
For comparison, we always find it helpful to look to a leader in the non-automated space. For snow blowers, this Honda snow blower is one of the best sellers. Both the Yarbo snow blower and the Honda are two-stage designs. The cleaning width of the Yarbo S1 is very comparable to the Honda, and the snow throwing distance is also similar. Yes, the Yarbo S1 has a smaller height, but that is by design. After all, the Yarbo snow blower can run constantly throughout the snowfall. So, you don’t need to wait until the snow finally ceases and the piles are taller than your kids.
Another important spec to know with the Yarbo snow blower is how much area you can expect to cover on one charge. That depends on how much snow you are asking the machine to work through. If it’s 1”, you can expect the Yarbo S1 to cover about 6,000 ft2 on one charge. With 5 inches of snow, the snow blower will clear about 2100 ft2 before it needs to recharge. Again, this just reiterates that it’s helpful to get your Yarbo S1 out clearing early and often, rather than waiting for snow to pile up.
The Yarbo App and Controller
Here is another cool aspect of the Yarbo S1 that you won’t find with a traditional snow blower: you don’t need to adjust that chute yourself. You just tell the Yarbo where you want the snow to go, and the robot will automatically send it there.
Similarly, once you tell the Yarbo system where you want the S1 to operate, it figures out the most efficient pattern to take, saving time and battery life.
How do you set all that up? Typically, you use the Yarbo app. In our testing, the app was fantastic. When we say that, we are really looking at two factors. First, the app connected very easily to Yarbo S1, and that connection stayed strong throughout our testing. Second, the Yarbo app is intuitive, extremely easy to use. Competitors in the robotic property maintenance industry are pretty up and down in this regard. Some apps are hard to navigate or not that precise. In that way, the Yarbo app rises above many others.
That said, there may be times when you want to control the Yarbo S1 manually. In that case, you can use a controller. (This looks, especially to those Gen Zers such as Jake, like an XBox controller.) The controller is also simple to use, and in our testing, it allowed you to be even more precise.
One of the most likely times when you would use the controller? When you are wearing gloves. Gloves, of course, make it challenging to use a screen on your phone. However, we had no problem using the larger buttons and the joystick of the controller with gloves on. Given that plenty of users would be setting up a snow blower when it’s cold, the controller feels like an ingenious addition by Yarbo.
Yarbo Battery and Charging
Another way Yarbo engineers have thought of how best to meet the needs of users is through the battery and the charging system.
Let’s start with the battery itself. It is simply massive, a 38.4 AH Li-Ion. It is also quite durable, encased in a sturdy shell. But what is most unique is that the battery has an internal heating system. That means that the Yarbo S1 can operate all the way down to -22° F (or -30° C, if you are an international friend.) It also means that the battery charges without damage. Charging a cold battery can severely limit the life of said battery. The Yarbo S1 solves that contradiction for users.
However, what we get most jazzed about is the Yarbo S1 charging system. In an industry first, that charging system is wireless. The Yarbo comes with a durable (read: thick and hefty) charging pad. When the unit needs to charge, it simply drives up onto the mat. This technology is similar to the Qi wireless charging method that phones use.
Why does this get us so excited? Well, with most robotic lawn equipment chargers, you are dealing with contacts. Those can get dirty or corroded. Since they are generally stored outside, they are often getting covered up with all the particulates in the air. (And yes, we just looked up the word particulates. We’s fancy.) So when Yarbo releases the M1 Lawn Mower module this fall, that charging method will be even more effective.
And with the Yarbo S1, wireless charging is absolutely ideal. Traditional contacts can get covered with snow and ice. But the Yarbo wireless charging pad will keep going strong all winter long.
Who is the Yarbo S1 Best For?
The Yarbo S1 is certainly well suited for residential use. If you live in an area that gets snow that you don’t feel like shoveling, consider this automated solution. And of course, the Yarbo S1 is ideal for anyone who physically has a hard time moving snow (due to injury, age, disability, or any other reason.)
However, we could see some commercial applications for the Yarbo S1 as well. Obviously, large complexes have people that come in early and clear parking lots more efficiently than the Yarbo. However, the Yarbo S1 would be perfect to run along the sidewalks. And since it can run continuously, you could even have the S1 running all day to keep the area clear for your employees and customers.
In short, it comes down to what we always say when discussing robotic property maintenance for commercial spaces. They allow the people to focus on what can’t be automated.
And no matter if you are using the Yarbo S1 for residential or commercial properties, you can rest assured that you are increasing safety and decreasing liability. For residential, you are protecting yourself from any potential injury. And knowing that the Yarbo has an advanced pedestrian avoidance system means that your robotic snow blower will not injure anyone.
Similarly, if you own a business, the Yarbo S1 protects you from any employees getting hurt clearing snow. And again, since the Yarbo will literally stop when it detects anyone, you do not run the risk of liability there either.
Yarbo S1 Price
Before we wrap up our review, we do want to discuss the cost of a Yarbo S1. It’s $7,500 for the base and the snow blower module, which is one of the higher price points in the industry.
That said, what you are buying is something with multiple functions, which is unique in the industry. So for that $7,500, you get the base unit (the Y1), the snow blower module (the S1), and the charging pad. Eventually, you can add on the lawn mower, the leaf blower, and everything else that Yarbo dreams up. And those attachments alone will be significantly cheaper than your initial investment. When you add it all up, the price will ultimately be cheaper than buying a robotic snow blower, lawn mower, and leaf blower all separately.
And based on our thorough review, we can assure you that you are buying a high-quality, user-friendly product.
But of course, if that price point is beyond your budget right now, you probably want to stick to buying robotic lawn mowers right now. Many of those are selling at a much lower cost.
Interested in the Yarbo S1?
If you think this robotic snow blower might be right for you, visit the Yarbo section on the Autmow website. There, you can fill out your contact information. We can tell you more and even potentially set up a demo.
If you are interested, but you need to see how it performs in the snow before you can commit, we understand. Stay tuned to the Autmow blog and the Autmow YouTube channel. We will have one of those tests soon.
Until then, feel free to leave more comments on our video, begging for snow. We are doing the same.