How-To’s, FAQ’s & More


Is Duct Cleaning Worth it?


Having your ducts professionally cleaned by Stuart Pro results in better indoor air quality and an HVAC system that has better airflow and runs more efficiently. It could also mean a decrease in your energy bills and fewer colds and respiratory problems for your family, which is a great concern at this time.

How do I know if my air ducts need cleaning?

  1. There is visible dust on vent covers and registers.
  2. You haven’t changed your air filter in months (or even longer!)
  3. Airflow is inconsistent throughout your home.
  4. Mold is evident in or around your HVAC system.
  5. There are noises in the ductwork.

If indoor air quality is important to you, then having your ducts cleaned is a good idea.

A shocking statistic by the EPA: Indoor air hazardous pollutant levels can be up to 70 times greater than in the outdoor air.

Dirty ducts breed bacteria, fungus, mold, mildew, and other microbes that are unhealthy for you and your family. And then, when the air or heat is turned on, those contaminants are spewed into your home. This can be particularly detrimental to asthma and allergy sufferers, children and the elderly, and those prone to respiratory illnesses.

But how do you choose a legitimate company to do your duct cleaning? Our article on how to spot and avoid a duct-cleaning scam gives you all the information you need.

Stuart Pro uses Abatement Technologies high-performance air duct cleaning equipment and specialty tools to remove dirt, debris, and other contaminants from ductwork systems. These HVAC air duct cleaning vacuums are designed to clean HVAC duct systems faster and more efficiently. Would you like to learn more? Call us anytime at 770.813.1316.


Tips on Buying a HVAC System


Are you buying a new home or thinking of replacing or updating your old HVAC system? This article will help you to shop smart and get exactly what you need to keep your home comfortable all year long.

The EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio) is used to evaluate how effectively a unit operates. It’s considered an easy objective measurement to decide between two units. The EER is calculated by dividing the BTU (British Thermal Units) rating by the wattage. If the EER is 12 or above, it is considered energy efficient. When comparing two HVAC systems, the one with the higher EER will be more energy efficient.

The SEER number (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) calculates the cooling capacity during a typical cooling season (rather than all-time). This number is most often shown on Energy Star labels. It measures a unit’s efficiency while cooling, but be forewarned; this universal measurement can be misleading if you live in an area with hot, humid summers as we do. Even a minor increase in the SEER rating of your HVAC system can help reduce power consumption significantly.

It’s also important to understand how many systems are needed to heat and cool your home properly. Larger homes need bigger systems. For the most accurate estimate of how many systems a house needs, call Stuart Pro! Our Comfort Consultants are available as your go-to HVAC inspectors during the buying or upgrade process.

Want even more helpful information? Check out our buying guide.


7 Ways You Are Making Your Heater Work Too Hard


Few homeowners think about how well their heating is working while it’s functioning correctly. It’s when things go wrong, and your feet are blocks of ice, that questions begin to arise! Can you help your system to run more efficiently? Absolutely. Are the steps to stop overworking your system difficult? No! In fact, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to avoid making your heater work too hard.


Problem 1: You block your vents with furniture

Keep vents clear of any obstruction. You want an even distribution of warm air throughout your home. Don’t want to rearrange your furniture? You may want to explore other heating options such as hydronic heating, which heats your house with hot water pipes that are underneath your floorboards. Do you want to close some vents in your home? Be sure to consult with us first. Sometimes closing vents can make your furnace less efficient and your electric bill more expensive.


Problem 2: You forget to change your filter

Say it with us again – change your air filters! This issue comes up repeatedly in almost all of our articles, but you can solve so many problems by regularly changing your filters. From helping with respiratory issues to saving you money, it’s just a smart move to change out your filters.


Problem 3: You don’t turn down your thermostat when you leave your house

The #1 way to cut down on energy costs and wear and tear on your system during the winter is to have it run less while you’re away or asleep. Programmable thermostats make this easy, but not everyone has one. Put a reminder somewhere in your home where you will see it every day to turn down your thermostat before leaving for work.


Problem 4: Cranking the thermostat when you’re cold

You come in from a frigid walk out in the cold, and you’re desperate to get warm. You crank the thermostat up to 75 degrees, thinking that will warm up your home—and your fingers—more quickly. It won’t. Setting your thermostat to 75 won’t get your house to 70 degrees any quicker.


Problem 5: Letting cold air into your home

Shut the door! Of course, leaving a door or window open will result in cold drafts into your home, but the real concerns are things that cause constant air leaks into your home. Things like gaps in doors, floors, and windows and insufficient insulation add up to high energy costs and a cold home. Add weather stripping and address poor insulation. You’ll be amazed at how much warmer your home is in winter, and how much cooler it is in the summer.


Problem 6: Skipping annual maintenance

The heater is running fine. No need for a yearly maintenance visit, right? Wrong! Annual maintenance must be done on your system to ensure maximum efficiency. You also want to get ahead of potential issues before they become a serious problem.


Problem 7: Choosing a cheap replacement

It’s finally time for a new HVAC system, and you choose the cheapest one without taking the time to do your research. Before you make a hasty decision, consider that ‘cheap’ doesn’t always mean the best value. You want your new system to last as long as possible, do an excellent job heating and cooling your home, and be so efficient that it lowers your energy bills. Take the time to do your research and give us a call at Stuart Pro. We’re happy to answer your questions and give you our recommendations.

air conditioning dirty filters impact

6 Ways Dirty Air Filters Impact Your HVAC System


Did you know? Dirty air filters are the #1 reason for HVAC system failures. It’s true! By restricting airflow into the air handler, a dirty filter places a lot of strain on your system. Over time, the fan motor may burn out, which can cause your HVAC system to overheat and fail. Here are some ways a filthy air filter affects your heating and cooling system:

  1. A dirty air filter is the #1 reason for HVAC system failure. Why? A dirty filter limits airflow into your HVAC system’s air handler. This restricted airflow places additional pressure on the air handler fan motor and could, over time, burn out the motor, which can cause your system to overheat and ultimately fail.
  2. Your HVAC system relies on air being recirculated continuously throughout your home. The harder your blower fan has to work, the higher your energy costs will be. Don’t think something as simple as an air filter will make much of a difference in how hard your fan has to work? According to the Department of Energy, a clogged and dirty filter can use 15% more energy than a clean one. Think of the difference 15% can make on your energy bill! If you want to reduce your energy bill, change your air filter regularly.
  3. Dirty, clogged air filters also lead to poor indoor air quality, which can worsen symptoms of asthma, cold and flu, and other respiratory conditions.
  4. A dirty air filter equals a dirty HVAC system. A dirty HVAC system means ducts that need to be cleaned more often and system components breaking down sooner than they should. It can even mean that you may need to replace your HVAC system sooner than expected.
  5. A clean air filter traps dirt and particles keeping your system running smoothly. If, however, the filter is dirty, then those same particles can begin to coat the heating and cooling coils. Over time, your system will have to work harder, and it will become more prone to burning out or freezing up.
  6. Dust, dander, and other particles clogging up your air filter will result in reduced airflow and an increase in energy usage. It may even become impossible for your system to reach your preferred indoor temperature levels.

Regular filter replacement is a small price to pay to extend the life of your HVAC system. If you have trouble remembering to buy and replace filters, try buying 6–12 months of filters ahead of time so that they are always on hand. Then, set a reminder on your phone to change out your filter. Problem solved!

furnace repair or replace

Is it time to replace your furnace?


Can your furnace be fixed, or is it time for a replacement? What is the most cost-effective solution that will also keep your home warm? Before you make a costly decision, read our article to quickly educate yourself on your options.

Should you fix or replace your furnace?

Do the math! Furnace age and cost of repairs should factor into your decision.

It’s time to replace your furnace if:

  • Your furnace is beyond three-quarters of its life expectancy – but how do you know? Ask your contractor or check the label of your furnace for the manufacturer’s date. Most furnaces last 15 – 20 years. They can last 5 – 6 years longer if they are regularly maintained
  • Repairs would cost more than a third of the replacement cost

Efficiency Saves You Money

Today, the average furnace is 80% efficient, which means that 20% of the fuel energy is wasted. But that’s the average furnace. Some furnaces are up to 98.5% efficient. Check the product information when you’re considering buying a furnace and look for the AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating.

A high-efficiency rating means that you will spend more money initially when purchasing your furnace, but you will also accrue savings during the cold months. For ease, let’s say that a highly efficient furnace (95%) will cost you $1,800 more than a less efficient furnace (80%). A 15% increase in AFUE (from 80% to 95%) would save you around $300 per year. If the added initial cost is $1,800, that’s a six-year payback, which is worth the higher upfront cost if you will be in your home for longer than six years.

Are your ducts sealed?

In some cases, the problem may not be with the furnace; it could be the ducts. Ducts transport warm air to all the rooms in your house. If your ducts are no longer adequately sealed, warm air could be escaping into spaces you don’t want to be heated, such as crawl spaces, your attic, or the basement. Have a specialist look at your ducts to access if they need to be repaired. Simple fixes such as taping up gaps, reinsulating, or even removing insulation can improve duct efficiency. To ensure that all gaps are closed, you can hire someone to seal your ducts with a substance that makes a rubber-like seal over every single hole in your ducts. This generally costs anywhere from $500 – $1,500 and can lower your heating bill by 20%! So, before you buy a new furnace, be sure to have your ducts checked out.

Schedule an Energy Audit

In a similar vein as ducts, sometimes your furnace isn’t the problem, your home is. Check with your electricity company about having an energy audit done:

Georgia Power

Jackson EMC

Sawnee EMC

Walton EMC

The auditor will look at your home and make recommendations to make your home more energy efficient. Attic-floor insulation, sealing windows, blowing insulation into walls and along the top of foundation walls can measurably improve your home’s energy efficiency. Depending on the current state of your home, you could save between 5 – 25%, which equals smaller bills and could even mean you can purchase a smaller furnace.

If you’re still perplexed about what you should do, just give us a call at Stuart Pro! We’re always happy to listen and to make recommendations that will save you money and keep your family comfortable year-round.

fireplace ac bill

Your Fireplace and Expensive Energy Bills


As temperatures begin to drop, it’s natural to start thinking about keeping your home as warm and cozy as possible. But did you know that your fireplace could be making your energy bill more expensive?

If you choose to use your fireplace, you need to make some easy and quick adjustments to your home.

Don’t Let Your Damper be a Downer. 

Did you know? Gas and wood fireplaces are the most inefficient heat sources you can use in your home (U.S. Department of Energy). The reason? Your fireplace damper. If your damper is open or unsealed, heated air goes up the chimney, and cold outside air is being sucked in to replace it. The result? Your overall energy consumption could go up by as much as 30%, or around $200 a year. And, to make matters worse, between 80–90% of the heat produced in an open fireplace using wood is lost up the chimney, which means that for every $100 you spend on firewood, you get around $10-$20 worth of heat.

If you are going to use your fireplace, be sure to do the following:

  • • Close your dampers when not in use.
  • • Check that your damper seal is in good condition, and if it isn’t, have it fixed.
  • • Install and use glass fireplace doors.

Indoor Air Quality

The importance of indoor air quality cannot be overstated.

  • • Dirty indoor air breeds bacteria, fungus, mold, mildew, and other microbes that are unhealthy for you and your family.
  • • Asthma and allergy sufferers, children and the elderly, and those prone to respiratory illnesses are particularly sensitive to indoor air pollutants.
  • • A shocking statistic by the EPA: Indoor air hazardous pollutant levels can be up to 70 times greater than in the outdoor air.

Add a fireplace to the mix, and suddenly you’re introducing dangerous pollutants into the air including nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and particles.

  • • Nitrogen dioxide irritates the eyes, throat, and nose and can also cause shortness of breath.
  • • Carbon monoxide causes flu-like symptoms and interferes with the body’s ability to utilize oxygen.
  • • Particles like ash, dust, and wood fragments are released during the incomplete burning of any fuel and can cause damage to the lungs.

So, what can you do to be sure that your fireplace isn’t harming your health and your indoor air quality?

  • • Choose the right fuel: dry, seasoned wood. Never use wet, painted, or treated wood.
  • • Have your fireplace inspected and cleaned once a year.

Talk to Stuart Pro about a whole-house air purifier. An air purifier will help with smoke pollution, and it may also lessen allergy symptoms and improve your indoor air quality.


A Buying Guide for Central Air Conditioning


Installing or replacing central air is a big commitment and investment in your home, and all the choices available can be overwhelming. We’ve put together a buying guide for central AC to help you make the most informed decision you can.

Types of Central Air Conditioning 

Split System

The split system is the most common design for central air conditioning. If your home has a split system, then ductwork is used to distribute the cooled air around your home.

The steps to cool your home are as follows:

  • • Your home is feeling a little warm (or downright hot!), and you adjust the thermostat. Your system turns on. (The thermostat will maintain your desired temperature once the house cools.)
  • • Refrigerant circulates between the outdoor condenser with compressor (the large box that sits outside of your home) and an indoor coil.
  • • The refrigerant cools and dehumidifies the air as a blower circulates the cooled air throughout your home using ducts.

A variation on the split system is the heat pump system, which functions as both an air conditioner and a heater.

Split Ductless Systems

Some homes cannot accommodate central air because there isn’t room to install ductwork. For those homes, a split ductless system is installed. The cooling effect feels like a central air system.

Like central air, a split ductless system has an outside condenser and compressor, but that is where the similarities end. Air handlers (indoor blower units) distribute the air and are mounted high on the wall. These handlers cool the individual room in which they are installed and are controlled with a remote. The outdoor and indoor elements of the split ductless system are connected by a conduit that encloses the refrigerant tubing, power cable, and condensate drain. The channel is hidden behind each air handler.

Important Factors When Choosing Central AC

Once you’ve confirmed that your home can accommodate central air conditioning, there are other factors to consider.


The larger your home is, the bigger your central air conditioning’s cooling capacity will need to be. AC size is calculated in British Thermal Units (BTUs) per hour or tons.


Home Size                                        Air Conditioner Size

600–1,000 square feet                    1.5 tons (18,000 BTUs)

1,000–1,500 square feet                 2 tons (24,000 BTUs)

1,500–2,000 square feet                 3 tons (36,000 BTUs)

2,000–2,500 square feet                 4 tons (48,000 BTUs)

2,500–3,300 square feet                 5 tons (60,000 BTUs)



Efficiency in an air conditioner equals how much cooling the unit produces for every watt of electricity. An air conditioner’s Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating will signal whether a system is efficient or not. The higher the rating, the more efficient the cooling equipment is, and the lower your energy costs will be. You should purchase a unit with a SEER rating of 15 or greater.

Programmable Thermostats

Programmable thermostats are an easy way to reduce your energy costs. Learn more about ideal settings and thermostat use here.


Scheduling a routine HVAC system checkup before each season will keep your heating and cooling system running at peak efficiency and save you money on energy bills. Plus, identifying and fixing minor problems helps you avoid expensive repairs later on. It also validates the manufacturer’s warranty for your units with certified, twice-a-year service. Learn more about our Comfort Plan.

Upgrading an Existing Central Air System

Upgrading your central air? You may need a different size from your old system. Upgrades you’ve made to your home such as new windows, adding insulation, etc., can affect your HVAC size. However, if you have expanded your home, you may need a larger system. The good news is that modern systems are 20–40% more energy-efficient than past models.

When upgrading your central AC, you will need a load calculation from your contractor, which includes whether your ducts will need to be resized, insulated, sealed, or even replaced.


If you are installing a brand-new AC system, your contractor will need to calculate the size of the system you need. If ductwork for your heating already exists in your home, adding a central system can cost less. However, heating ducts may not be in the right location or the correct size for optimal cooling. To be sure that your old ducts will work in harmony with your new system, your contractor must check that ducts are the correct size and that there are enough supply registers to deliver cooled air. Undersized ductwork can waste energy and be noisy. Other ways to optimize your ducts:

Clean Your Ducts 

Having your ducts professionally cleaned results in better indoor air quality and an HVAC system that runs more efficiently with better airflow. It could also mean fewer colds and respiratory problems for your family and a decrease in your energy bills. If you are unable to have your ducts professional cleaned, then be sure to clean dirt and other debris from the condenser coils, change filters monthly, and check for blockages in the drainpipe. Also, be sure to keep any hedges or bushes that are close to the outside unit trimmed.

Seal and Insulate Ducts

It’s easy to recognize drafts coming in through a door or window, but a drafty door doesn’t have near the effect on your energy bill that an improperly sealed or insulated duct will. A leaky duct can waste 20–30% of the energy used to run your system. Yikes! Be sure to seal and insulate your ducts to save money and to stay cooler in the summer, and toasty in the winter.

Installation: Call on Stuart Pro! 

When looking for a company to install or replace a central AC, we hope that we are the first you call. We’ve worked for years to build and maintain a trustworthy reputation in our community. If you would like to investigate before making your final decision, here are the steps to take.

Ask Around

Talk to your neighbors, friends, and family. Whose work do they recommend? Visit competitor websites and look at online reviews. Then call and speak to the different businesses. Ask questions, get a quote, and get a feel for each company.

Background Checks

It may seem extreme, but people who work on your air conditioning system will be in your home. You want to be sure that they are reliable. Things to look and ask for:

  • • Verification of bonding and insurance
  • • Required contractor’s licenses
  • • Standing with the Better Business Bureau and consumer affairs office
  • • Certification with NATE – North American Technician Excellence
  • • Online reviews and feedback

Get It In Writing. 

When getting a bid, ask for a detailed analysis of cooling needs for each room in your home. Request a printout of all calculations, including ductwork design. It is important to get a document from each contractor so that you can compare what each is offering. If a bid is drastically lower than a competitor’s, it may be because something crucial isn’t included in the less expensive bid.



6 Fun Fall Football Ideas!


We love the cooler temperatures that fall brings, and we also LOVE football! Why not combine the two with our six fun fall football ideas?


Chili Buffet: Chili and fall just go together, and it’s definitely a crowd-pleaser when you have friends over to watch the game. Make a giant pot of chili and ask friends to bring fixins’ such as tortilla chips, sour cream, shredded cheese, avocado, radishes, olives … The list goes on and on! 


Single Serve Seven-Layer Dip: Seven-Layer Dip is delicious. But when lots of people, particularly kids, are dipping their chips in, the layers get all mixed up and icky. Solution! Make a big dish of dip for the adults, and single-serving dips in clear plastic cups for the kiddos. 


Mini Chicken and Waffles Sliders: Here’s a ‘fancy’ finger food that only takes minutes to make. Buy mini frozen waffles and hit the drive-thru for your favorite boneless fried chicken. Toast the waffles and sandwich the fried chicken in-between. Secure with toothpicks and serve. (You may need to cut the chicken into smaller pieces.) 


Tailgate Party for Your Kids: Some kids love to watch football, while others get wiggly after a few minutes and want to play. Set up an indoor or outdoor area of your home that’s easy to supervise and stock it with kid-friendly food and games. Tell the kids that this is their very own ‘tailgate party’ where they are free to play, eat, and make lots of noise – away from the TV!  


Pumpkin Carving: Pumpkin carving is a fun fall activity that’s best enjoyed with friends. Invite them to come over an hour before the game to carve pumpkins. You can even challenge your friends to carve the logo or mascot of their favorite team into their pumpkin! 


Football M&M’s Popcorn: If you’ve never poured a bag of M&M’s into a hot tub of popcorn, do it now! Then, when you’re finished snacking, make another batch of popcorn. Let it cool down this time, and pour in M&M’s that are the colors of your favorite football team. Can’t find those colors in the store, and don’t want to spend time hand separating them? Go here and choose your team!


Now, bring on fall and football! 

allergies and hvac

Your HVAC System Can Reduce Fall Allergy Symptoms


If you suffer from spring allergies, chances are you are also affected by fall allergies. Did you know that your HVAC system can be a powerful ally in reducing your fall allergy symptoms?

Fall Allergies: Ragweed and Mold

Most people who are allergic to pollen—common in the spring—are also allergic to ragweed, which is the most common cause of fall allergies. Ragweed flourishes in Georgia. One plant can produce up to one billion pollen grains in a season. Yikes!

Mold is another common fall allergen. Cool, humid air and piles of damp leaves make fall weather an ideal environment for mold growth. Homes that are surrounded by trees are especially vulnerable to mold.

These two common allergens combined with cooling temperatures, which reduce the effectiveness of your immune system, make fall a tricky time for allergy sufferers. But never fear! You can take simple steps to reduce the severity of your symptoms – and your HVAC system is the first-line in your defense.


Clean Your HVAC System: Clean any dust, dirt, and debris from your outdoor system. Have Your Ducts Cleaned

Clean Your Home: Regularly vacuuming your home will help get rid of ragweed, mold, dust, and other pesky allergens. 

Rake Your Yard: Rake leaves away from your home, bag them up, and dispose of them. If you suffer from allergies, you may have to hire someone to do this for you.

Check and Change Your Filters

The newer your air filter, the better it is at catching and trapping air pollutants. Filters that are clogged up with dust and hair cannot do their job correctly. Check and change your air filters often. If you are especially prone to allergies, consider thicker filters.

Manage the Humidity in Your Home to Reduce Mold

Turn the air conditioner on during warm fall days to remove excess humidity from your home. Also make sure to use your exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms when cooking and after showering. 

If you have questions about how your HVAC system can reduce allergy symptoms, please give us a call at 770.813.1316. We are here for you!


Easy Dinner Ideas


Getting back into the groove of your kids’ school schedule is tough. Everything can feel rushed and hectic. Here are some easy, kid-friendly meal ideas to take the stress out of dinner!


Orange Chicken


Mexican Rice and Beans with Avocados


Chicken Tetrazzini




Mongolian Beef



One-Pot Chili Mac & Cheese


One-Pot Chinese Chicken Fried Rice


Chicken Cacciatore


One-Pot Cheesy Chicken Tex Mex


One-Pot Jambalaya



Lasagna Grilled Cheese


30-Minute Skillet Lasagna


Taco Grilled Cheese


Farmhouse Egg Bake


Bacon Cheeseburger Gnocchi



Chicken Pot Pie Casserole


Sun-Dried Tomato, Kale, and Chicken Sausage Bake


Cheesy Chicken Asparagus Casserole


Cheesy Tuna Noodle Casserole


Spinach Casserole



Taco Pasta Bake


Baked Ziti


Cheesy Baked Pasta with Cauliflower


Baked Stuffed Shells


Loaded Pizza Pasta Casserole



Comforting Creamy Chicken Pasta Soup


Tortellini, Sausage and Kale Soup


Roasted Tomato and Red Pesto Soup


Taco Soup


Loaded Baked Potato Soup


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Stuart Pro is a family-owned business that believes in putting our customers first. That’s why we want to hear from you. Fill out the form and we’ll get back to you soon.

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Type Of Inquiry

Contact Us

Stuart Pro is a family-owned business that believes in putting our customers first. That’s why we want to hear from you. Fill out the form and we’ll get back to you soon.

Contact Info


Type Of Inquiry

Contact Us

Stuart Pro is a family-owned business that believes in putting our customers first. That’s why we want to hear from you. Fill out the form and we’ll get back to you soon.

Contact Info


Type Of Inquiry

Stuart Pro Heating & Air is OPEN and closely monitoring the status of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has issued federal guidance to states and municipalities regarding “essential” work. Based on their definitions, the activities conducted by an HVAC installation and service company are considered essential.

We are taking every precaution to keep our employees and customers safe during these uncertain times, such as wearing shoe covers and latex gloves, sanitizing hands and tools before each job, and maintaining a social distance – no signature required. Payment by phone is also an option if needed. So, if you have any service or maintenance needs, please call us right away. We are here for you!