Blues face Wigan today aiming to complete a full year without losing at home.
And midfielder Gardner admitted: "When I was with Villa, I can remember players didn't fancy coming here.
"That was for a local derby and if you can't get up for that, what can you get up for?
"We know other clubs won't fancy it either - especially when the fans sing their hearts out. That makes it hostile for teams coming here.
"We should have beaten Liverpool in our last home game. It was two points thrown away because the ground was on fire.
"It's not that we go out thinking we can't be beaten. But we think we're going to win if we work our socks off."