I will second the enforsement of the Champion Generators. I've had a 3500/4000 for 4 years. It has been used 24x7 for months at a time in the hottest of Texas heat. I lived in the Casita full time dry camping June through September. Rarely did it get any rest. I bought it used from another forum member that bought the Champion 3100 inverter generator. We compared the noise level on the 3500/4000 open frame I bought, his 3100 Champion Inverter and his Honda EU2000. The Champion 3100 was as quiet as the Honda 2000 when it was in eco mode. However when the Casita AC kicked in the noise level on the Honda was about the same as my Champion 3500/4000 open frame genset.
I loved my previous Honda EU2000, I had it for 5 years. I always babied it and put it in the shade and kept it out of the rain. It just couldn't take the Texas heat running to it's very limits. I keep thinking when my current Champion needs to be replaced I'll popped for the 3100 Inverter from Champion. I'm not sure its going to die anytime soon.
Champion is said to be the generator of choice used by the Forest Service in remote locations. There are thousands of certified Champion repair locations (example all Northern Tool Stores)
There is an company that is the number one Champion Dealer called Super Gen. The founder use to work for Champion Corporate. You can get a new pull start Inverter 3100 for under $849
Or a factory refurbished for $595
I would not hesitate to purchase a refurbished model. I also would pass on the electric starter. It adds more weight and cost. I am a 63 year old female and the Champion pull start is easy and 90% of the time starts on the first pull. The electric start and the battery needed on board is just more more thing to maintain. Because if you are not using it a lot you will need to put a battery tender on it so it stays charged.
When I was looking to replace my dead Honda EU2000 I talked to some of the Honda reps at Air Venture (largest aviation gathering in the world) in Oshkosh, WI. Honda has a huge presents at that event. They had 2 generator locations in the trade show portion of the event (they bring just about everything they make from Indy Cars, Jets, Motorcycles and ASIMO the robot. The Honda genset guys discourage paralleling two of the 2000 units. First they said you won't truly get 4000 Watts out of it and you have twice the chance for something to break down.
We do a fair amount of Texas summer camping boondocking. A Honda 2000 for extended periods of time in the heat is on a death march. A lot also depends on the age of your AC unit. One of the new AC units that LHC uses to replace old dead AC units in much less demanding. With my 3500/4000 I can run everything (AC, microwave, hair dryer) with out shutting anything else off.
FYI Super Gen Products makes a genie tent that helps dampen noise.
I think a generator is an excellent piece of equipment to have. We have used it for power outages at home. It also opens a whole new world of possibilities on how to use the Casita when you are not tethered to a power pole.