Originally Posted by Darwin Maring
We had a Yamaha years ago and could not find support at the time. Perhaps that has changed by now.
I just heard a similar story from a friend recently. He purchased a Yamaha 3kW generator
for a week-long camping trip that he intended to use daily. It failed after the first 15 minutes. The nearest dealer was 20 miles out of the away and Yamaha America would only authorize a repair (not an exchange) and it would take a week to get the parts and they would not give him a loaner for the duration of the camping trip. He was 1000 miles from home where he had purchased the generator
and so he called them to see what they could do. The deal they worked out required him to purchase a new generator
and then pick up the the repaired generator after his camping trip to bring it home with him so the local dealer would refund his purchase and then they'd re-sell the repaired generator. They did this only after he threatened to buy a Honda generator and return the broken Yamaha for a refund.
PPL Motorhomes has a helpful video that describes the virtues of Yamaha generators: Yamaha generator video on YouTube
It talks about the benefits of their generator over the competition. They claim twice the engine life of a Honda and the fact that it has a fuel gage. Also, the fuel supply to the carb can be turned off and the bowl allowed to run dry, which should help with starting after storage. I can confirm that fuel left in a carb bowl can evaporate and leave flakes of varnish and other solid residue that will block the jet. You'll find it at the worst possible time, i.e., when needed for an emergency. That's why generators should be started periodically whether you need to use them or not, or if you can, drain the fuel from the carb and turn off the fuel source if the model you have allows it. After watching the video, I was convinced I wanted a Yamaha generator until I talked with my friend about his service experience.
I don't know how much different an experience he would have had with Honda, so I don't mean to imply they have better service policies than Yamaha.
Perhaps the real lesson is not to take a generator camping until you've run it for an hour under load to make sure it has no latent manufacturing defects.