Here's my nickel on the subject, based on some of the previous comments.
My gas 2 cycle small 'china special' snow blower I bought at Menards about 12 years ago is still working ok (probably need to replace the belt on it though). It is the only remaining gas powered device in my garage, besides the cars (hoping to get the Tesla X down the line though).
I've never had to pay for any crazy "tune-up" on it (that's 98% of the time a scam on those that don't know any better, especially when it comes to snow blowers and lawn mowers, weed eaters, etc.) or do any 'post winter procedures' on it.
Here's some basic info. Most basic 2 cycle engines require the gas to be mixed with an oil for lubrication. That oil gets burned up at the same time as the gas of course. Gas burns much more 'cleanly' than does oil, nor does the gas leave much residue on whatever it comes in contact with. The one component that REALLY dislikes the presence of the oil, is the spark plug. It gets gummed up, sooted after regular use, acting as an insulator for the spark that is need to start the chain reaction of a piston engine.
Guess what a "tune-up" entails 98% of the time, taking out the spark plug, inspecting it for normal wear and tear and then taking a wire brush to it. That's it, $cha-ching for the 'experts'.
As for 'summerizing' a snowblower or 'winterizing' other summer tools, what you really need to do, is use a fuel mixture with a stabilizer in it. I believe 'sta-bil' is a popular brand, go to a hardware store or walmart, they all have it. Add it to your fuel mixture per instructions and it will keep the fuel 'fresh' even when stored for a year without draining the gasoline. Keeping it 'fresh' keeps it from 'decomposing' if you will and from some of the chemicals becoming tiny sludge that coats mechanical/electrical components that are then negatively impacted by said 'sludge'.
Now on to the item at hand. It would be more useful if the auger wasn't made of mere hard plastic (judging by the picture). As soon as you run into a solid piece of an ice chuck (courtesy of your city snow truck that throws the snow back into your driveway entrance) this auger will either shatter or just crack off pieces. Most 'bigger' snowblowers use thicker metals for the augers (pros and cons), and most less expensive blowers use thick stips of reinforced rubber (looks like a tire that's been cut into strips, but without the metal inside the tire) as the contact surface of the auger. This 'rubber' is both rigid enough to move the snow, but yet flexible enough to not shatter when it hits big ice chunks.
One thing I can't speak upon, is how annoying it might be to drag an electrical cable around behind you and worry about either running over it with the blower, or having it drag snow around when you're moving, or how rigid the cable might be in cold temperatures and whether that's just causing premature failure of the electrical cable (sheathing) from being flexed/unflexed in those temperatures, (probably depends on the quality of the cable).
As for 'screeching' coming from a snowblower, unless its a metal screeching, (and you'd know if you heard it) its most likely the belt on the unit (transfers torque/power from the motor to the move the auger). Could be that the belt is worn and isn't making enough contact when offered a certain level of resistance (snow density), or it fell off. If it fell off and you heard screeching, there's good chance its now damaged and at best its lifespan is severely impacted, or at worst (if its thick/reinforced enough) it will shred the housing that protects it from external contact when it breaks on you should you choose to reuse it. If your snow blower is new and you're hearing it, then yeah, something more serious is defective, take it back.