There are a number of factors that must be considered when reading portable generator reviews and ratings. It is important to know how much power is required and it is not worthwhile to purchase a unit that is underpowered.
Only small cost savings will be realized right away but the frustration will last for the life of the unit. The portability of the power generator is also important; if it can't be moved around when the time comes then it will be significantly less useful.
Brand is another important thing to look for. When you get a trusted name you're much less likely to have problems down the road and when you do you can be a little bit more confident that they will get solved.
Honda has certainly made a name in the industry and offers a very broad selection of portable generators. For smaller applications and uses like camping, the Honda EU1000iA will deliver 1000 W of power. This is going to be suitable for running things like lights, fans small televisions or DVD players. It will provide the convenience of power at a remote location and at only around 30 pounds is still fairly portable.
For big power needs with a Honda engine, there is the Honda Powermate PM0497000. It's not that portable, but it can be wheeled around like a wheelbarrow and weighs in at about 180 pounds. This is going to have enough juice to run a small household in emergency situations with a rating at about 7000 W of continuous power. Everything in between is available with the Honda gas generator line-up.
Honda also makes diesel generators. If the generator is going to be used fairly frequently, diesel might be a better option as a diesel motor will last longer than a gasoline over in most cases. It does not run as hot and it also produces a large amount of power for the displacement. It can be a little bit difficult to find a diesel generator from Honda, so if you're looking for something there are a couple of other good names that you can turn to.
Generac portable generators are also a trusted name in the industry. They offer a number of different sized systems for home or portable use and are known for having long lasting engines. To get something in a smaller model the Generac GP 1800 is about as lightweight as they come from Generac. This is going to be able to run a couple of smaller appliances or power tools quite capably. It's a quiet model and is still fairly easy to move around. The Generac portable generators in the GP series go right up to 17,500 W of power so there's going to be one that suits every kind of application.
Coleman is also a very trusted name in the industry and many people know it for camping generators of different kinds. They make some very capable power generators and are known for using quality parts that are built by Honda, Mitsubishi and other similar suppliers. For a model that is extremely capable and still small enough to move around, the Coleman Powermate PM0433750 will be suitable for most applications. It can be purchased for under $600, and it will deliver 3750 W of power. That's going to be of more than enough for most jobsite applications or recreational vehicle usage. If more power is needed, then the Powermate PMA525500 is available with 5500 W of continuous power.
Blue Max 7500DE model delivers up to 7500 W of power. That's going to be more than enough, but keep in mind that it's not going to be very portable.
Durostar is also a good name and easy generators and in the same size range the Durostar DS7200 will deliver 6000 W of power and has added features like electric starting and a wireless remote.
There is the best portable power generator out there for every use and they come in a number of different power ratings and with different types of fuels. The most important thing is to make a quick list of the appliances that you're going to use on a portable power generator and add up the wattage. Make sure that the generator that will handle this kind of power consumption with extra 10-20% for error margin and emergency situations.