How to use your Nest thermostat as a traditional programmable thermostat

Your Google Nest thermostat can use Auto-Schedule to learn your daily routine and automatically create a temperature schedule for you. But if you prefer to turn off learning and create a manual temperature schedule that never changes, this article will show you how.

Applies to: Google Nest Web appNest thermostatsGoogle Nest Mobile app

Nest thermostats give you different options for setting up a temperature schedule that meets your needs:

If you want your Nest thermostat to work more like a traditional thermostat, give it a manual schedule. First you’ll need to turn off Auto-Schedule learning, then either delete its existing schedule or edit it to your liking. See below for step by step instructions.

1. Turn off Auto-Schedule learning

When you turn off Auto-Schedule, your existing schedule will remain but your thermostat will stop learning from your future adjustments. If you like, you can clear the existing schedule as well (see step 2 below).

With the Nest app:

  1. Open the Nest app and select your Nest thermostat.

  2. Select Settings Nest settings icon  and then Auto-Schedule.

  3. Tap the switch to turn it off.

On your thermostat:

Press the ring and choose Settings Nest settings icon   and then Nest Sense and then Auto-Schedule and then Off.

2. Clear your existing schedule (optional)

Before you decide whether to clear your existing schedule, here’s how to see it:

  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd gen Google Nest Learning Thermostat: Press the ring and choose Schedule Nest thermostat schedule icon.

  • Nest Thermostat E: Press the ring and choose Settings Nest settings icon and then Schedule.

If you want to keep your existing schedule and manually tweak it, don’t follow the steps below to clear it. Instead, skip to section 3 to set up a manual schedule.

If you want to completely erase your existing schedule, here’s how:

  1. On your thermostat, select Settings Nest settings icon  and then Reset and thenSchedule.

  2. Depending on which Nest thermostat you have, select either Reset or Clear.

Note: If you have a Nest Thermostat E, you can select Basic to clear your existing schedule and replace it with the default Basic Schedule.

3. Setup your manual schedule

Manually creating or editing the schedule will let your thermostat change your home’s temperature at fixed times that you’ve set.

With the Nest app:

  1. Open the Nest app and select your Nest thermostat.

  2. Select Schedule Nest app schedule icon.

  3. Create or adjust temperature set points to your liking. For details about how this screen works, see our article about temperature schedules.

On your thermostat:

  • Go to the schedule screen on your thermostat.

  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd gen Nest Learning Thermostat: Press the ring and choose Schedule Nest thermostat schedule icon.

  • Nest Thermostat E: Press the ring and choose Settings Nest settings icon  and then Schedule.

  • Create or adjust temperature set points to your liking. For details about how this screen works, see our article about temperature schedules.

Things to keep in mind

  • True Radiant: If you've enabled True Radiant, your thermostat may start your system before the set point in your schedule. That’s because True Radiant is designed to have your home reach the target temperature by the time you set in your schedule. If instead you want your system to start at the scheduled time (not before), disable True Radiant; your home won’t reach the target temperature until after the scheduled time.
  • Eco Temperatures: If you’ve enabled Eco Temperatures, your thermostat might still automatically switch to its Eco Temperature when it senses that everybody has left home. If you don’t want it to do that, you’ll need to disable Eco Temperature auto switching for your thermostat.
  • Using your thermostat without any schedule: If you don’t set up a schedule after clearing it, your thermostat will stay on whatever temperature you set it to until you select a new temperature. This means it will work like a traditional non-programmable thermostat or like “hold” mode on a programmable thermostat.
  • Start learning again: If you ever change your mind and want to start using Auto-Schedule, just turn it back on. Your Nest thermostat will use any temperatures that are in your schedule as a starting point to start learning again. For a quick refresher, see our article about Auto-Schedule.
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