How to install your Nest Protect

You can easily install your Google Nest Protect in just a few minutes. Follow the steps in this article to learn how.

To get an overview of Nest Protect installation, you can watch our videos to walk you through the steps. The steps are different for 1st and 2nd generation Nest Protects.

How can I tell which Nest Protect I have? >

To set up and install your Nest Protect, you will need:

  • A Wi-Fi connection
  • Your Wi-Fi password
  • A phone or tablet (iOS or Android)
  • A Phillips screwdriver

Before you begin, make sure you're aware of local regulations. Specific requirements for smoke alarm installation vary between states and regions. Check with your local safety agency or Fire Department for current requirements in your area.

Where in the room should I install my Nest Protect? >

Which rooms in my home need a Nest Protect? >

You can also have a Nest Pro set up and install all your Nest Protects for you. Click here to find a Nest Pro near you. After they've installed your Nest Protects, they'll give you a demo and answer any questions you have.

Select your Nest Protect

Each kind of Nest Protect has different installation instructions. Select the Nest Protect that you have to go to the right instructions. If you're not sure which Protect you have, you can see how to tell here.

How to install your 2nd gen wired Nest Protect

1. Get the Nest app

Before you install your Nest Protect on the ceiling or wall, set it
up with the Nest app. Download the app and sign in or create a
free account. You can use a phone or tablet for setup.

Learn more about the Nest app >

Download Nest app

Important: If you already have the Nest app installed on your
smartphone or tablet, make sure it's the latest version before
setting up your Nest Protect.

2. Add your Protect to the app

Scan QR code

The Nest app will guide you through each step: scanning the
Nest Protect QR code, connecting it to the Internet, and
connecting it to other Nest Protects in your home.

Tip: Lay everything out on a table for easy setup.

How to set up a 2nd gen Nest Protect with the Nest app >

Write down the Entry Key for each Protect you’re installing and
keep this number in a safe place. The entry key is 6 digits long,
located on the back next to the QR code. This can save you
some time in the future if you ever remove your Protect from
the app and need to add it back.

3. Have more Nest
Protects?

Protect 2nd gen add another nest protect illustration

The Nest app will ask you if you have additional Nest Protects
to set up. If so, it'll take you through a faster setup. Be sure to
keep all your Nest Protects together until they're all set up and
ready to be installed.

Tip: Your Nest Protect came packed in a clear plastic dust
cover. Keep the cover on so your Nest Protect stays clean until
you install it.

4. Turn off power

Protect yourself and avoid blowing a fuse. Switch off the correct
circuit breaker for the room where you are installing Nest
Protect or remove the fuse from the fuse box.

Warning: Failure to turn off power may result in serious
electrical shock, injury, or death.

5. Remove your old smoke alarm

Note: If you don’t have an old smoke alarm, skip to step 9.

To prevent electrical shock, make sure the green power light is
off on the alarm. You may have to twist the alarm to release it.
Carefully remove it to keep from damaging your ceiling or wall.

Tip: Your old smoke alarm might make a loud noise when you
disconnect it.

6. Remove the old
backplate

Unscrew the backplate from the electrical box. Save the screws
to install the Nest Protect backplate later.

Tip: All smoke alarms prefer to live in a dust free area, so
remove any dust before you install Nest Protect.

7. Remove the old
connector

Twist the wire connectors counterclockwise to unscrew them
and detach the 120V connector from your old smoke alarm.

The exposed wire should be straight.

8. Attach the Nest
connector

Hold the white wire ends together, cap them with a wire
connector and twist clockwise until it’s secure. Do the same
with the black wires. If there are any extra wires, you won’t need
them. Cap them with wire connectors.

9. Install the Nest Protect backplate

Nest protect 2nd gen wired

Screw the Nest backplate to the existing electrical box, reusing
the existing screws. You can also screw the backplate directly
into the wall or ceiling with the Nest screws.

Important: The backplate’s Nest logo must face away from the
ceiling and towards you, or you won’t be able to attach your
Nest Protect to it.

Tip: If the electrical wiring box is recessed and isn't flush with the wall or ceiling, use the dry wall screws that are included in the Nest Protect (Wired 120V) box and attach the backplate directly to the ceiling.

10. Connect power

Nest protect gen 2 detach power connector

Plug the 120V connector into the back of your Nest Protect.

11. Install your Nest
Protect

Nest Protect gen 2 backplate

Tuck any excess wiring into the electrical box first. Hold Nest
Protect against the backplate and turn it clockwise. You’ll feel
the tabs drop into place and grip the backplate. Continue
turning until it’s square with the wall or ceiling. Install the rest
of your Nest Protects if you have more.

Tip: To remove your Nest Protect (for cleaning or battery
replacement), turn off power to your Nest Protect at the
breaker box or remove the fuse first. Then turn
counterclockwise until it disconnects from the backplate.

12. Switch power back on
or replace the fuse

13. Press to test

Press Nest Protect gen2

After you’ve installed all of your Nest Protects, press the button
on one Nest Protect. It will tell you what to do next.

During the test, every Nest Protect in the house should speak
up, confirming that they're connected to each other.

How and when should I test my Nest Protect? >

Important note: If one of your Nest Protects doesn't speak up
or sound its alarm during the test, try moving it closer to your
other Nest Protects and testing again. It should be located
within 50 feet of another Nest Protect, but its range may be
affected by your home's construction or interference from other
wireless electronics.

What is wireless interference and how do I troubleshoot
it? >

If it still doesn't speak up during the test, reset it to defaults
and add it to the app again.

How do I reset the Nest Protect and remove all my
personal settings? >

 

How to install your 2nd gen battery powered Nest Protect

 

1. Get the Nest app

Before you install your Nest Protect on the ceiling or wall, set it
up with the Nest app. Download the app and sign in or create a
free account. You can use a phone or tablet for setup.

Learn more about the Nest app >

Download Nest app

Important: If you already have the Nest app installed on your
smartphone or tablet, make sure it's the latest version before
setting up your Nest Protect.

2. Add your Protect to the
app

Scan QR code

The Nest app will guide you through each step: scanning the
Nest Protect QR code, connecting it to the Internet, and
connecting it to other Nest Protects in your home.

Tip: Lay everything out on a table for easy setup.

How to set up a 2nd gen Nest Protect with the Nest app >

Write down the Entry Key for each Protect you’re installing and
keep this number in a safe place. The entry key is 6 digits long,
located on the back next to the QR code. This can save you
some time in the future if you ever remove your Protect from
the app and need to add it back.

3. Have more Nest
Protects?

Protect 2nd gen add another nest protect illustration

The Nest app will ask you if you have additional Nest Protects
to set up. If so, it'll take you through a faster setup. Be sure to
keep all your Nest Protects together until they're all set up and
ready to be installed.

Tip: Your Nest Protect came packed in a clear plastic dust
cover. Keep the cover on so your Nest Protect stays clean until
you install it.

4. Remove your old smoke alarm

You may have to twist the alarm to release it. Unscrew and
remove the backplate if there is one. Your old smoke alarm
might make a loud noise when you disconnect it.

Tip: All smoke alarms prefer to live in a dust free area, so
remove any dust before you install Nest Protect.

5. Install your Nest Protect backplate

Screw the Nest backplate to the ceiling or wall using the
included screws. The Nest screws are self-tapping, so there’s
no need to drill pilot holes in wood, plaster and other relatively
soft materials.

Important: The backplate’s Nest logo must face away from the
ceiling and towards you, or you won’t be able to attach your
Nest Protect to it.

6. Install your Nest
Protect

Nest Protect gen 2 backplate

Hold Nest Protect against the backplate and turn it clockwise.
You’ll feel the tabs drop into place and grip the backplate.
Continue turning until it’s square with the wall or ceiling. Install
the rest of your Nest Protects if you have more.

Tip: To remove your Nest Protect (for cleaning or battery
replacement), turn it counterclockwise until it disconnects from
the backplate.

7. Press to test

Press Nest Protect gen2

After you’ve installed all of your Nest Protects, press the button
on one Nest Protect. It will tell you what to do next.

During the test, every Nest Protect in the house should speak
up, confirming that they’re connected to each other.

How and when should I test my Nest Protect? >

Important note: If one of your Nest Protects doesn't speak up
or sound its alarm during the test, try moving it closer to your
other Nest Protects and testing again. It should be located
within 50 feet of another Nest Protect, but its range may be
affected by your home's construction or interference from other
wireless electronics.

What is wireless interference and how do I troubleshoot
it? >

If it still doesn't speak up during the test, reset it to defaults
and add it to the app again.

How do I reset the Nest Protect and remove all my
personal settings? >

How to install your 1st gen wired Nest Protect

1. Get the Nest app

Before you install your Nest Protect on the ceiling or wall, set it
up with the Nest app. Download the app and sign in or create a
free account. You can use a phone or tablet for setup.

Learn more about the Nest app >

Download Nest app

Important: If you already have the Nest app installed on your
smartphone or tablet, make sure it's the latest version before
setting up your Nest Protect.

2. Add your Protect to the
app

The Nest app will guide you through each step: scanning the
Nest Protect QR code, connecting it to the Internet, and
connecting it to other Nest Protects in your home.

Tip: Lay everything out on a table for easy setup.

How to set up a 1st gen Nest Protect with the Nest app >

Write down the Entry Key for each Protect you’re installing and
keep this number in a safe place. The entry key is 6 digits long,
located on the back next to the QR code. This can save you
some time in the future if you ever remove your Protect from
the app and need to add it back.

3. Have more Nest
Protects?

The Nest app will ask you if you have additional Nest Protects
to set up. If so, it'll take you through a shorter setup. Make sure
to keep track of which Protects you've already set up and where
you're going to install them.

Tip: Your Nest Protect came packed in a plastic dust cover.
Keep the cover on so your Nest Protect stays clean until you
install it.

4. Turn off power

Protect yourself and avoid blowing a fuse. Switch off the correct
circuit breaker for the room where you are installing Nest
Protect or remove the fuse from the fuse box.

Warning: Failure to turn off power may result in serious
electrical shock, injury, or death.

5. Remove your old smoke alarm

Note: If you don't have an old smoke alarm, skip to step 9.

To prevent electrical shock, make sure the green power light is
off on the alarm. You may have to twist the alarm to release it.
Carefully remove it to keep from damaging your ceiling or wall.

Tip: Your old smoke alarm might make a loud noise when you
disconnect it.

6. Remove the old
backplate

Unscrew the backplate from the electrical box. Save the screws
to install the Nest Protect backplate later.

Tip: All smoke alarms prefer to live in a dust free area, so
remove any dust before you install Nest Protect.

7. Remove the old
connector

Twist the wire connectors counterclockwise to unscrew them
and detach the 120V connector from your old smoke alarm.

The exposed wire should be straight.

8. Attach the Nest
connector

Hold the white wire ends together, cap them with a wire
connector and twist clockwise until it’s secure. Do the same
with the black wires. If there are any extra wires, you won’t need
them. Cap them with wire connectors.

9. Install the Nest Protect backplate

Screw the backplate to the existing electrical box, reusing the
existing screws. Alternately, you can screw the backplate
directly into the wall or ceiling with the Nest screws.

10. Connect power

Plug the 120V connector into the back of your Nest Protect.

11. Install your Nest
Protect

Tuck any excess wiring into the electrical box and push Nest
Protect onto the backplate. Then give it a slight twist clockwise.
It’ll click into place. Install the rest of your Nest Protects if you
have more.

Tip: To remove your Nest Protect (for cleaning or battery
replacement), turn off power to your Nest Protect at the
breaker box or remove the fuse first. Then turn
counterclockwise until it disconnects from the backplate.

12. Switch power back on
or replace the fuse

13. Press to test

Press Nest Protect gen2

After you’ve installed all of your Nest Protects, press the button
on one Nest Protect. It will tell you what to do next.

During the test, every Nest Protect in the house should speak
up, confirming that they’re connected to each other.

How and when should I test my Nest Protect? >

Important note: If one of your Nest Protects doesn't speak up
or sound its alarm during the test, try moving it closer to your
other Nest Protects and testing again. It should be located
within 50 feet of another Nest Protect, but its range may be
affected by your home's construction or interference from other
wireless electronics.

What is wireless interference and how do I troubleshoot
it? >

If it still doesn't speak up during the test, reset it to defaults
and add it to the app.

How do I reset the Nest Protect and remove all my
personal settings? >

How to install your 1st gen battery powered Nest Protect

1. Get the Nest app

Before you install your Nest Protect on the ceiling or wall, set it
up with the Nest app. Download the app and sign in or create a
free account. You can use a phone or tablet for setup.

Learn more about the Nest app >

Download Nest app

Important: If you already have the Nest app installed on your
smartphone or tablet, make sure it's the latest version before
setting up your Nest Protect.

2. Add your Protect to the
app

The Nest app will guide you through each step: scanning the
Nest Protect QR code, connecting it to the Internet, and
connecting it to other Nest Protects in your home.

Tip: Lay everything out on a table for easy setup.

How to set up a 1st gen Nest Protect with the Nest app >

Write down the Entry Key for each Protect you’re installing and
keep this number in a safe place. The entry key is 6 digits long,
located on the back next to the QR code. This can save you
some time in the future if you ever remove your Protect from
the app and need to add it back.

3. Have more Nest
Protects?

The Nest app will ask you if you have additional Nest Protects
to set up. If so, it'll take you through a faster setup. Be sure to
keep all your Nest Protects together until they're all set up and
ready to be installed.

Tip: Your Nest Protect came packed in a clear plastic dust
cover. Keep the cover on so your Nest Protect stays clean until
you install it.

4. Remove your old smoke alarm

You may have to twist the alarm to release it. Carefully remove
it to prevent ceiling or wall damage. Unscrew and remove the
backplate if there is one.

Tip: Your old smoke alarm might make a loud noise when you
disconnect it.

5. Install your Nest Protect backplate

Screw the Nest backplate to the ceiling or wall using the
included screws. Use two to four screws. Choose the slots to
support Nest Protect evenly. Make sure the backplate is
squared up to the wall.

Tip: All smoke alarms prefer to live in a dust free area, so
remove any dust before you install Nest Protect.

6. Mount your Nest
Protect

Push Nest Protect onto the backplate tabs and give it a slight
twist clockwise. It'll CLICK into place.

Tip: To remove your Nest Protect (for cleaning or battery
replacement), turn it counterclockwise until it disconnects from
the backplate.

7. Press to test

Press Nest Protect gen2

After you’ve installed all of your Nest Protects, press the button
on one Nest Protect. It will tell you what to do next.

During the test, every Nest Protect in the house should speak
up, confirming that they're connected to each other.

How and when should I test my Nest Protect? >

Important note: If one of your Nest Protects doesn't speak up
or sound its alarm during the test, try moving it closer to your
other Nest Protects and testing again. It should be located
within 50 feet of another Nest Protect, but its range may be
affected by your home's construction or interference from other
wireless electronics.

What is wireless interference and how do I troubleshoot
it? >

If it still doesn't speak up during the test, reset it to defaults
and add it to the app again.

How do I reset the Nest Protect and remove all my
personal settings? >

 

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