Rotherham United were well beaten as they slid to a comprehensive Championship defeat at Villa Park.
Two goals by Rudy Gestede before half-time put the game beyond them and they fell further behind with six minutes to go to Jack Grealish's dribbling run and neat finish.
Ironically, Grealish pounced just after the Millers' best spell of the game, but Alan Stubbs' men could have no complaints about the outcome.
Villa bossed much of the second half to record their first win since February.
The home side broke forward and took a 21st-minute lead all of the visitors' making.
Jon Taylor and Jake Forster-Caskey left the ball for each other in the Villa half and seconds later Aly Cissokho was crossing and Gestede beating Lee Camp with a well-directed header into the corner of the goal.
Camp had produced a stunning save in the fifth minute to palm Cissokho's 20-yard curler over the bar.
Gestede was just wide with a similar effort after 29 minutes and six minutes later Danny Ward tried a lob which landed on the roof of the Villa net, while Camp was called into action again on the stroke of half-time to keep out a Ross McCormack long-ranger.
The hammer-blow came seconds before the break when Ross McCormack played in dangerman Gestede who produced a lovely dinked finish to make it 2-0 and leave Rotherham with a near-impossible task.
Millers manager Stubbs handed a debut to new signing from Spurs Dominic Ward at centre-half, with Kirk Broadfoot not ready for action after an injection in his back, and right-back Darnell Fisher came on in the second period for his first Millers action since his midweek arrival from Celtic.
Richie Smallwood started in midfield in place of captain Lee Frecklington, missing with a calf injury, and the armband went to right-back Stephen Kelly.
Rotherham didn't keep possession well enough and Villa, in the Premier League last season, were simply too good for them.
Aston Villa (4-4-2): Gollini; Bacuna, Elphick, Chester, Cissokho; Grealish (Green 90), Westwood, Tshibola, Ayew (Adama 74); Gestede, McCormack (Gardner 85). Subs not used: Bunn, Hutton, Amavi, Richards.
Rotherham United (4-3-3): Camp; Kelly, Ball, Wood, Mattock (Fisher 71), Forster-Caskey (Yates 59), Vaulks, Smallwood; Forde, Ward, Ward. Subs not used: Price, Wilson, Allan, Thorpe, Warren.
Goals: Gestede 21, 45+3, Grealish 84 (Aston Villa).
Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire).