How-To’s, FAQ’s & More


Heating & Cooling Tips for Spring


Spring is finally here! It’s time to open windows, air out our homes, and maybe even do a little spring cleaning. It’s also a great time to give your HVAC system a break and improve your heating and cooling system’s performance and efficiency. With very little time and effort, you can simultaneously save money and enjoy cool temperatures. How? By following our heating and cooling tips for spring.

Spring Clean Your AC

It’s quick and easy! Just vacuum the coils to remove accumulated dust and change your air filters. Doing these two small things improves efficiency and increases the overall life of your HVAC system.

Buy a Year’s Worth of Air Filters

Air filters should be changed every month, but people often go for months without doing so because it’s a pain to go to the store to purchase a filter. This problem is easily solved by buying a year’s worth of filters. Then, when the first of the month rolls around, you have an entire stash to pull from.

Schedule a Maintenance

Mild spring weather means that this time of year is ideal for an HVAC tune-up. During maintenance, our pros will fix issues and get your system in peak condition. Then when the temperatures start to rise, your AC can easily handle the scorching heat.

Benefits of a Preventative Maintenance Include:

  • Lower energy bills
  • Improved performance and energy efficiency
  • Fewer repairs
  • Improved air quality

Replace Batteries in Alarms

It’s a good idea to replace batteries in carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms twice a year: spring and fall. If your HVAC system begins to function in an unsafe manner, you want to be sure that the alarm is triggered.

Reprogram Your Thermostat

Do you have a programmable thermostat? If so, resetting your schedule could save you a lot of money. Find a comfortable temperature your family agrees on and set it for when the family is home. When everyone is away all day at work and school, program your thermostat to a warmer temperature.

Spring Energy Savings

Give your HVAC system a break and stay cool at the same time!

  • • Cooler temperatures at night mean that you can turn off your air conditioner, open windows, and let in the fresh air.
  • • Ceiling fans help air to circulate and keep a room from feeling stagnant. Make sure that your fans are set to spin counter-clockwise during warmer months.
  • • Cook outside on the grill! Your family will love it, and you won’t have to heat up the kitchen and then cool it down again with the air conditioner.
  • • Ease the strain on your air conditioner by closing the curtains or blinds against the glare of the sun. Pay special attention to empty rooms, like a guest room, and be sure that curtains are closed in those areas.
  • • Seal any air leaks in your home. Keep cool air in and hot air out!
  • • Use exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens to pull heat out of the home when you’re showering and cooking.

Make these minor adjustments in your home to keep it cool and comfortable – and save money at the same time! And don’t forget to call us to schedule your spring preventative maintenance appointment.



What does ‘HVAC’ mean: The History of HVAC


‘HVAC’ stands for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. When you think of air conditioning and heating, you probably think of very modern technology. But people have been using different methods to keep their homes comfortable for hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of years.

HVAC History Highlights

In ancient Rome, a system of central heating called a hypocaust was developed. A hypocaust pushed heated air through a network of air ducts, pipes, and under raised floors to heat a room, and sometimes the walls. The hypocaust was a very early forerunner of modern radiant floors.

People used manpower and ropes in ancient China, Egypt, and India to manually animate fans and cool rooms.

In 14th century Europe, the dangerous problem of toxic gasses in mines was diminished by the development of efficient fans. The same principles used for these fans were later adapted to ventilate homes. Chimneys were also added to stoves and fireplaces during this time which made indoor air quality much cleaner and heating the home safer.

In 1744, Benjamin Franklin created a more efficient version of the cast iron stove. Around the same time, latent heat was discovered, (which helped with the development of water heating systems), and the steam engine was created.

In the 1830s, Dr. John Gorrie produced buckets of ice by designing a machine that used compression. Air was then blown over the ice, cooling the surrounding area.

William Siemens used a similar concept in 1861 to heat surroundings. He is responsible for the development of the ‘open hearth furnace.’

In 1902, Willis Carrier, who is known as the inventor of modern air conditioning, needed to solve the problem of paper being ruined by humidity in printing plants. He invented a machine that combined a system of coils that circulated refrigerant with large fans that “conditioned” the air. His intention was to extract humidity from the air, but his invention also cooled the air.

Later in the 1900s, the air conditioning process was reversed, and homes were able to be heated as well as cooled.


Holding a Community Event


It may be hard to believe, but warmer weather is just around the corner! Chances are, there are lots of friends you haven’t seen over the cold winter months. Here are some ideas to bring your community together.

Hold a Trivia Night

A trivia/quiz night is fun for both large and small groups. All you have to do is find a place to hold the event, get some questions together, find an entertaining master of ceremonies, and invite your friends to participate. Once you have a core group of people attending, the numbers begin to expand as your friends form teams.

Don’t forget to encourage friendly competition!

Gather a Gardening Gang

Trivia is fun, but if you’re longing for fresh air and time spent outdoors then gather some like-minded friends and beautify your community together. Find a green space overwhelmed by weeds, a small park that needs some TLC, or even a school whose playground could use some freshening up. Break out your shovel and spades and get to work. Pulling weeds, picking up litter, and planting some flowers can do wonders to a once neglected space. And, best of all, you and your ‘gardening gang’ can take real pleasure in the work you have done.

Swap it up!

Do you have a bike that’s just sitting in your garage? What about shoes and clothes that are still in excellent condition, but your kids have outgrown them? Instead of throwing your stuff out, swap with someone in your community! Exchanges work well in school cafeterias or gyms. Designate a day for everyone to bring in their unwanted items, and let the swapping begin! If you have leftover pieces at the end of the day, bring them to your local Goodwill or other charity shops.

Garage Sale

A garage sale is similar to a swap day except that you collect money instead of swapping. A giant garage sale can be a great way to raise funds for community projects like planting trees, painting public areas, etc.

Holding a community event is a great way to bring people together, get to know your neighbors better, and even make your area a more beautiful place to live.


Trade New Year’s Resolutions for 12 Smaller Goals


People make BIG resolutions every year on January 1st, but it’s rare those resolutions get fulfilled. Why not try something new and less discouraging? Instead of 1 resolution this year, make 12 smaller goals. Sound crazy? Sound like more work? It isn’t! It’s much more sensible and do-able.

For instance, if your New Year’s Resolution is: I want to feel better and get into shape – that’s an awesome resolution, but it isn’t specific enough. So, let’s break it down into 12 smaller goals, which add on to one another as the year goes on:

January: 10,000 steps per day

February: Drink more water

March: 50 sit-ups per day

April: Add a vegetable to two meals per day (snacks count!)

May: Do an outdoor activity – gardening, biking, playing a sport – at least once a week.

June: Push up challenge! Count how many pushups you can do at the beginning of the month versus the end of the month.

July: You’re doing great, but you may start to get bored at this point, so this month’s goal is to find a health-buddy! Someone who will exercise with you, trade recipes with you, and support you in your goals.

August: Add 10 minutes of stretching to your day

September: Increase steps to 12,000 per day

October: Go to bed 30 minutes earlier

November: Stop drinking caffeine after 3:00

December: Reflect on your year. Journal about what worked and what didn’t. Make a plan for your goals next year. What will you continue to do, what will you add?

If you stay true to your small goals, by the end of 2019, you will be stretching, doing 12,000 steps per day, drinking more water, doing pushups and sit-ups, eating more vegetables, getting more sleep, less caffeine, and you will have a health buddy to help and encourage you! You will feel better and be in better shape. If you tried to accomplish all of this at once, it would be virtually impossible, but spreading the goals out over year makes it much more likely that you will achieve the results you want.

This can be done for any resolution! Want to declutter your house? Space it out over a year. Want to read more or save money? Start small in January (read a blog article a day, skip expensive Starbucks) and build up to December (You’re reading tw books a month, and you’ve saved enough to go on vacation).

We believe in you! Now, what are your goals for 2019?


Transitioning Your HVAC System From Summer to Fall


October is a tricky time of year temperature-wise. You leave for work all bundled up in the morning, and by lunchtime, after you’ve peeled off your jacket and scarf, you’re wondering why in the world you wore a sweater! It can be the same with getting the temperature right in your home or business.

Think of the fall season as a pause between the extreme heat of summer, and the frigid cold of winter. It is actually the perfect time to prepare your HVAC system for colder weather.

Here are our tips for transitioning your HVAC system from summer to fall.

Begin Using Your Air Conditioner Less

Take advantage of cooler evenings and mornings by turning the air conditioner off and turning your fans on. If it is especially nice outdoors, you may want to open windows and allow fresh air to circulate throughout your home.

What’s that smell?

After having your heater off for a year or more, it’s normal to notice a burning smell when you first turn it on. The heater is burning off dust that has accumulated over the year. The smell should go away within a few minutes. It is also wise to change your air filter when you first turn on the heater so that trapped dust, pet hair, etc., isn’t contributing to the smell.

If the burning smell doesn’t go away, then you may have a larger problem.

When a burning smell is a cause for serious concern:
• Your heater smells smoky or oily
• It smells like electrical wires are burning
• It smells like burning rubber
• There is a persistent musty/mildew smell

If your heater smells like any of the above, please contact us as soon as possible.

Tidy up and check for moisture

Vacuum dust away from your furnace blower and return air vents. Make sure that furniture or other objects aren’t blocking vents from easily taking in air. Check to see if there is condensation on your windows or vent pipe. Other signs of moisture buildup include bubbling or chipping paint on windowsills, mold, and mildew growing on windows and wood trim, and rust around vent pipes.

What’s that sound?

Bump. Thump. SQUEAK! If your HVAC system is making sounds you’ve never heard before, then it’s time to give us a call. Strange, persistent sounds usually indicate a problem that is best addressed before the cold weather sets in.

Schedule a Professional Maintenance with Stuart Pro

Just like a vehicle, your HVAC system functions best when it is tuned up and running efficiently. This means cleaner, more comfortable air for you, cost savings on utility bills, and extended life for your unit. Plus, identifying and fixing minor problems helps you avoid expensive repairs in the future. Bonus: it also validates the manufacturer’s warranty for your units with certified, twice-a-year service.

Do you have questions about any of the above or concerns that your HVAC system isn’t running as smoothly as it could? Don’t hesitate to give us a call! We are always happy to talk to you. 770-813-1316


Five Party Planning Tips for Labor Day and Beyond


Whether you’re hosting a Labor Day party, a game day party or just a fun get-together, you don’t have to break the bank or spend all week prepping. We’ve rounded up some ideas to make your event less “eventful”.

  1. 1. Plan ahead. Choose make-ahead recipes so on party day all you have to do is pop them in the oven or pull them out of the fridge. Also, consider cooking one large type of meat rather than 30 hamburgers or 50 hot dogs. You can also buy a fruit, veggie or cheese tray from your local grocery store.
  2. 2. Keep it simple. Yes, you can make it look Instagram worthy, if that’s your thing, or you can focus on a few simple elements. Flowers from the yard in vases or jars. Coordinating paper plates, napkins, cups, etc. A drink table and a food/dessert table. A simple string of Christmas lights adds ambiance to any deck, porch or backyard.
  3. 3. Keep it fun! Cornhole, KanJam, horseshoes, playing cards and other games get people mingling and laughing together.
  4. 4. Ask for help. Have friends bring the drinks, appetizers or desserts. That’s one less thing you have to worry about.
  5. 5. Don’t sweat it. The simple act of hospitality means more than having a picture-perfect backyard or custom drink options. Enjoy your guests and the opportunity to make them feel at home.

Before Fall Arrives, Keep Your AC Alive and Well for Another Year


Who’s ready for pumpkin spice everything? We know one thing – your HVAC system is ready for cooler temps as well! Before you break out the pumpkin spice coffee creamer, the sweaters and start anticipating fall events though, spend some time on your AC. Here are some tips to ensure it will be ready to run next summer.

  1. 1. Give it a break. Your AC has been running day AND night for months. Now’s the time to turn it down, keep your blinds closed to help reduce heat, use a ceiling fan, and program your thermostat.
  2. 2. Clean it up. Over the summer, the area around your unit may have accumulated toys, grass clippings, trash, fallen tree branches, weeds or various other objects. Spend a few minutes cleaning up – this helps ensure airflow isn’t restricted.
  3. 3. Replace the air filters! This is simple and cheap to do and provides so many benefits (and helps prevent problems in the long run).
  4. 4. Schedule an appointment! End of summer is an ideal time to have one of our professionals do a system check up and make sure everything is set to run smoothly next summer (and ensure you’ll stay toasty this winter).

Keep Your Cool During Back to School


Whether your kids are excited or less-than-excited for school to start, here are some things you can do to help transition from summer days to school days.

Talk to them. Ask them what they’re looking forward to, what they’re nervous about and more. You’ll get a glimpse into what they’re thinking and can help them figure out ways to overcome any fears or nerves.
• Give them some extra help those first few weeks. It takes a little while to get back into the routine and they may need more time and support. Rushing doesn’t help anyone adjust!
• Have a firm bedtime. Whether they’re in kindergarten or high school, all students need sleep to function well and stay healthy.
• Put technology boundaries in place. Keeping tech out of their bedrooms and limiting screen time is essential to healthy brains and bodies.
• Give them free time. Kids need a chance to unwind and just play. Don’t fill their every free moment with planned activities.
• Plan out some quick and easy meals so you can have a family meal at home, without spending the evening in the kitchen. It’s a good way to connect with your kids after a busy school/work day.


Five Signs Your AC is on the Fritz


It’s hot and humid and your HVAC unit is working overtime. Do you have a nagging feeling your unit is struggling to keep up or are you just wondering how to know it’s time to replace? Here are five signs.

1. It’s past the decade mark. (The average lifespan of an HVAC unit is 15 years.) Units that are 10 years old and older can start to wear out.
2. Repairs are becoming more frequent and more costly. At this point, it’s probably more cost effective to replace the unit (and more energy efficient!).
3. The air coming out of your vents isn’t the right temperature or isn’t blowing forcefully enough. This is a sign something’s not right – there’s a problem with leaky ducts, you’re leaking freon, etc.
4. It uses R22 Freon, which is being phased out and has become even more costly to replace. Eventually you’ll have to buy a new unit anyway and if you keep the old one limping along, you may spend more than if you replaced it now.
5. Your energy bill has increased. That’s always a good sign something is up.

If you’re dealing with any of these issues or others, give our experts a call at 770-813-1316 or schedule an appointment today.


Cool off with a Georgia Waterfall


Ah, the hot, humid Georgia summer days. The days when even the dog doesn’t want to go outside. But we know a few places the entire family can go to cool off and experience some of Georgia’s hidden gems! What are we talking about? Georgia’s waterfalls! There are hundreds of waterfalls scattered throughout our state and some of them make for great family adventures.


For example, Minnehaha Falls is a hidden gem on Lake Rabun. Visitors end up on a windy, narrow road with the lake on one side and the falls on the other. The official falls sign is scratched into the wooden railing that leads to the falls – don’t blink or you’ll miss it. But it’s worth the adventure. It’s a very short, very kid-friendly hike to the falls where the mist and abundant foliage and greenery provide a welcome break from summer heat.


Another easy, half-mile hike is Anna Ruby Falls. A short drive from Helen, this double waterfall is breathtaking. The paved hike up is stroller friendly and includes trail signs for those who enjoy learning more about the area around them. There’s also a gift shop and restrooms at the trailhead.

Interested in seeing more of Georgia’s waterfalls? Here’s a list of 40 must-visit waterfalls in North Georgia.

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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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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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