Learn about Nest thermostats before you buy

Google Nest thermostats are designed to be more than just smart, they’re part of a thoughtful home. They’ll learn from you and your home and work to help keep you comfortable and save energy.

Get to know the Nest thermostat

Can you show me how it works (video)? 

Installing the Nest Learning Thermostat
Installing the Nest Thermostat E
Meet the Nest Learning Thermostat
Meet the Nest Thermostat E
Nest Thermostat E - The frosted display

Will a Nest thermostat help me save energy? 

Independent studies have shown that Nest thermostats save energy. In an average home, the thermostat controls about half the energy bill and can have a significant impact on energy costs.

Energy saving highlights:

  • Energy saving features like the Nest Leaf to help you pick a temperature that will help save energy.
  • Nest thermostats can turn down the temperature when you’re away. This helps prevent heating or cooling an empty home.
  • Nest thermostats have earned an EPA ENERGY STAR®. In February 2017, the Nest Learning Thermostat became the first thermostat to get ENERGY STAR certified by the EPA. Nest Thermostat E is also ENERGY STAR certified.
  • Nest thermostats can pay for themselves in two years or less. Independent studies have shown that Nest saved people an average of 10% to 12% on heating and 15% on cooling. Based on typical energy costs, we’ve estimated average savings of $131 to $145 a year. Individual savings are not guaranteed.

Learn more about how the Nest thermostat is shown to save energy here:

Nest Real Savings >

How are the Nest Learning Thermostat and the Nest Thermostat E different? 

Both the Nest Learning Thermostat and the Nest Thermostat E offer energy saving features and the ability to control your thermostat with your phone or tablet. Here are some similarities as well as a few key differences between the thermostats.


Nest Learning Thermostat
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Nest Thermostat
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Control from anywhere with the Nest app

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Proven energy-saving features

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Can use Home/Away Assist to turn itself down after you leave

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2 year warranty

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1 year warranty


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Extended Nest Pro Warranty available

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Frosted display blends into the background


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High-resolution color display

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Learning features like Auto-Schedule

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Optional pre-generated basic schedule


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Farsight shows you the time, temperature, or weather from across the room

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Metal ring with multiple finish options

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Ceramic feel finish


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Works with most central heating and cooling systems

Check compatibility >

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Compatible with 95% of 24v systems

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Compatible with most 24v systems

Additional wire terminals to be compatible with more systems

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Easy DIY installation

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Professional installation may be required for some types of systems

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What colors does it come in? 

The Nest Thermostat E is only available in white. The Nest Learning Thermostat is available in several colors depending on what region you’re in.

Nest Learning Thermostat

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Stainless steel

nest thermostat 3rd gen copper

nest thermostat 3rd gen white

nest thermostat 3rd gen black

Note: Not all colors are available in all countries.

Nest Thermostat E

nest thermostat e cooling


How can I tell if my system is Nest compatible? 

Nest thermostats can replace thermostats that are 20-30V. This means that most systems should be compatible with a Nest thermostat. Use our online tool to help you check compatibility:

         Nest Compatibility checker >

You can find out more about Nest thermostat compatibility as well as types of systems that are incompatible here:

         How to tell if your system is Nest compatible >

Do I need to replace all my thermostats with Nest thermostats? 

No. If you have multiple thermostats in your home, you can replace any number of them with Nest thermostats. If you’re only replacing one thermostat, it might be a good idea to replace the one you use the most to help you save more energy.

Your old thermostats will continue controlling your system just like they always have, but they won’t be able to take advantage of any of the energy saving features of your Nest thermostat.

How Nest thermostats work with zoned systems >

Does the Nest thermostat need a common wire? 

Nest thermostats have Wi-Fi, activity sensors, and color displays. However, unlike many smart thermostats, Nest thermostats typically don't need a Common (C wire) to stay charged up. Nest thermostats use very little power, less than 1 kWh/month, while a 40W light bulb that's used 4 hours per day consumes about 5 kWh/month.

Without a common wire, your Nest thermostat will charge itself using your existing heating and cooling wires. Depending on your heating and cooling system, you may need a common wire installed to be compatible with the Nest thermostat. See the following article to learn how to tell if your system needs a common wire:

Learn about common wires and Nest thermostats >

Does it work with older systems? 

It doesn’t typically matter how old your system is, just that your current thermostat is low voltage (20-30V). Use our Compatibility Checker to see if your system is compatible:

Nest thermostat Compatibility checker >

You can find more information about compatibility with different types of systems here:

How to tell if your system is compatible >

Does it work with zoned systems or multiple thermostats?  

Nest thermostats are compatible with zoned systems, including zoned systems with dampers. However, there are some zoned systems that require a common wire to work with a Nest thermostat.

You can learn more about how Nest thermostats work with zoned systems here:

Nest thermostats and zoned systems >

Setup and Installation 

Can I install it myself? 

Yes, Nest thermostats are easy to install in most homes. You’ll need to make sure that your current system is compatible, then you can follow our installation instructions in the Nest app or here:

How to install your Nest thermostat >

Certain types of systems will require professional installation. Use our compatibility checker to see if you have one of these types of systems:

  • Dual fuel systems (a system with a furnace and a heat pump),
  • Systems with dehumidifier/humidifiers
  • Systems with multiple fan speeds

You can find a local Nest Pro to install your thermostat by using the Pro finder.

Note: Nest Pros are independent companies or contractors that Nest works with to help you install your Nest products. Although they are not employed by Nest, we try to maintain a network of well-rated installers for our customers to work with.

Can I get a professional to install it for me? 

If you have a complex system or if you’d just like some help, you can have a local Nest Pro install your thermostat. After they’ve installed your Nest thermostat, your Nest Pro installer can give you a demo and answer any questions you have.

        Find a Nest Pro >

If you purchase a Nest thermostat directly from a Nest Pro and have them install it for you (and enter their Nest Pro ID during setup), you’ll be eligible for an extended warranty.

        Learn more about the Extended Pro Warranty >

Note: Nest Pros are independent companies or contractors that Nest works with to help you install your Nest products. Although they are not employed by Nest, we try to maintain a network of well-rated installers for our customers to work with.

How do I install it myself? 

The Nest app will guide your through installation and setup. Here is a basic overview of the steps:

  1. Make sure your current thermostat is compatible and get a wiring diagram.
  2. Turn power off to your system and install your Nest thermostat on the wall.
  3. Set up your Nest thermostat. Your thermostat will guide you through answering some basic questions about your system and your home.
  4. Connect your thermostat to the app.
  5. Learn about how to use your thermostat and change settings.

If you’d like to read detailed instructions on the above steps, see the following article to get started:

How to install your Nest thermostat >

Does it need to be connected to Wi-Fi? 

You don’t need to connect your thermostat to Wi-Fi to use it. Your thermostat will still be able to heat or cool your home and can still help you save energy.

However, you won’t have access to all your thermostat’s features, and some of the energy saving features on your thermostat won’t work as well. For example, here are a few of the features you won’t have if your thermostat isn’t connected to Wi-Fi:

  • Your thermostat won’t be able to get local weather data.
  • Your thermostat won’t be able to download software updates.
  • You won’t be able to control it with your phone or tablet.

How do I connect my thermostat to my phone? 

After your thermostat is installed, the app will guide you through connecting your thermostat to your phone. This will let you change the temperature and settings even if you’re not at home.

If you skip this step during installation, you can always come back later and connect the thermostat to your phone using the app.

How to connect your thermostat to the app >


How and what do Nest thermostats learn? 

Your thermostat will learn what temperatures you like and when you like them as well as when you’re more likely to be home, or away. It will build a custom temperature schedule to help save energy and keep you comfortable.

         How Nest thermostats learn >

Will my Nest thermostat automatically turn down when I leave? 

Your Nest thermostat can use Home/Away Assist to automatically switch to your Eco Temperatures when you leave to help save energy. You can enable Home/Away Assist on your thermostat or with the app.

Home/Away Assist uses activity sensors in your Nest products and your phone’s location to automatically switch your Nest products when you leave and when you come back.

         Learn more about Home/Away Assist >

         Learn more about Eco Temperatures >

What is Nest Sense? 

Nest Sense is at the core of what makes our products thoughtful. It’s a combination of advanced sensors and software algorithms.

Nest Sense features on your Nest thermostat can work to help keep you comfortable or save energy. For example, the Nest Leaf can show you when you’ve chosen an energy saving temperature.

         Learn more about Nest Sense >

Can I use a room temperature sensor? 

Yes. The Google Nest Temperature Sensor is an optional accessory that lets you choose where your thermostat measures the temperature in your home to help keep you and your family comfortable.

        Learn more about the Nest Temperature Sensor >

Are there discounts or rebates? 

If you live in certain areas you may be eligible for a rebate or a discount when you purchase a Nest thermostat. You can check your zip code on nest.com/rebates to see if rebates are available in your area.

Even if rebates are not available where you live, Nest works with partners to help you plug into other ways to save. You can visit nest.com/energy-partners to learn more and to see if there are energy saving programs near you.

        Learn about Nest thermostat rebates, rewards, and other ways to save >

 Using your Nest thermostat

How do I use my Nest thermostat? 

After you finish setting up your thermostat, you’ll be able to control it using the thermostat on the wall or with the app on your phone or tablet.

Using your phone or tablet

  1. Download and open the Nest app from the Apple App Store or from Google Play.
  2. Add your thermostat to the app.
  3. Tap the thermostat icon on the app home screen to start using your thermostat.

You can tap the up and down arrows to adjust the temperature, turn your fan on or off, see your energy history, and more. For more information, see the following article:

How to control your thermostat with the app >

Using your thermostat on the wall

Nest thermostats don’t have a touch screen. Use it just like a normal thermostat, turn the ring to make it warmer or cooler.

  • Press your thermostat ring towards the wall to see more options.
  • Turn the ring to select an option.
  • Press the ring again to confirm your selection.
Nest thermostat hand animation image.

Your thermostat screen

Nest Learning Thermostat Nest Thermostat E
Nest thermostat temperature Nest thermostat e labels

Your screen background will turn orange if your system is heating, blue if your system is cooling or black if your system is idle.

The Current Temperature is the ambient temperature your thermostat measures in the room.

The Target Temperature is the temperature your system is trying to reach by heating or cooling.

         Learn about what you’ll see on your Nest thermostat >

How do I switch between Heating and Cooling? 

Depending on your system, your thermostat will have several modes: Heat mode, Cool mode, Heat-Cool mode, ECO, and Off.

When the weather changes, you may need to switch between heating and cooling your home. You can switch your thermostat mode with your thermostat or with the app. See the following article for more information about what each mode does, and how to switch modes:

        How to switch thermostat modes >

How do I use my phone to control my thermostat? 

In order to control your thermostat with your phone, you need to connect your thermostat to the app.

Once it’s connected you’ll be able to use your phone to adjust the temperature, change settings, and more... even when you’re not at home.

         How to control your thermostat with the app >

If you share a home with other people and you want to let them control your thermostat as well, invite them to share access to your Nest home using a Family Account.

         Learn about Family Accounts and how to share access >

Can I set a heating and cooling schedule? 

Your Nest thermostat can learn a temperature schedule for you automatically, but you can always change it or create your own custom schedule. Learn more about Auto-Schedule and how to create a temperature schedule here:

        Learn about heating and cooling schedules >

What are Eco Temperatures? 

Your Nest thermostat can automatically switch to Eco Temperatures after it senses that nobody’s home to help save energy. You can change these temperatures at any time using the app.

       Learn about Eco Temperatures and how to change settings >

How do I control my fan? 

Depending on how your thermostat is wired, you’ll be able to run your fan without turning on heating or cooling. You can manually turn your fan on with the thermostat or the app, set a schedule to have your fan run at set times, or set your fan to run all the time.

Note: You don’t need to turn on your heating or your air conditioner to use your fan, but you won’t be able to turn your fan on while your thermostat is off.

         How to control your fan with the Nest Thermostat >

 Safety and Security

What if my Wi-Fi goes down?

If the Wi-Fi in your home goes down or something else causes your Nest thermostat to go offline, your thermostat will continue to control your heating and cooling system. It will stay at the last temperature you set it to, and will keep following your heating or cooling schedule.

You won’t be able to control your thermostat with the app until it reconnects, but you can always adjust the temperature by turning the ring on your thermostat.

Your thermostat will periodically try to reconnect to your network, but if the network is down for a while it will check in less often to conserve battery power.

What if the power goes out? 

If the power goes out, it’s likely that your heating and cooling system are unpowered as well. If that’s the case, your Nest thermostat will not be able to control them. You’ll need to wait for the power to come back on to keep using your thermostat.

If the power is out for an extended time your Nest thermostat’s internal battery may drain, and it may take some time to recharge when the power comes back on.

What about data security on the Nest thermostat? 

Nest works hard to keep your data secure.

In order to access your thermostat remotely you’ll need to log into the app so you’ll need to keep your login and password secure. To help make your account more secure, you can enable 2-step verification.

Information from your thermostat is transmitted to Nest servers using secure AES 128-bit encryption to help keep your data safe.

Learn more about security and privacy at nest.com/privacy.

How long is the warranty? 

The Nest Learning Thermostat comes with a standard 2 year warranty while the Nest Thermostat E comes with a 1 year warranty.

If you purchase a Nest thermostat directly from a Nest Pro, have them install it for you, and they enter their Nest Pro ID during setup, you’ll be eligible for an extended warranty.

          Learn more about the Extended Pro Warranty >

What is Nest's privacy policy? 

At Nest, we take your privacy seriously. Learn more about our privacy practices at the following link:

        Privacy statement for Nest products and services >

Purchasing and ordering 

Is there a monthly subscription or fee? 

There is no monthly fee to use your thermostat or enjoy its core energy savings and comfort features.

In which countries is it available for purchases? 

You can find a list of countries where Nest products are available and supported here:

           Countries where Nest products are available >

Where can I buy the Nest thermostat? 

You can see pricing and purchase Nest thermostats at store.google.com.

Tip: You should check before visiting one of our retail partners to see which Nest products they carry. 


How do I troubleshoot Nest thermostat problems? 

Sometimes you might run into some trouble with your Nest thermostat. That’s okay, we’re here to help.

Search Nest's support site for your particular issue or visit the Nest thermostat support home page to see suggestions for troubleshooting topics.

Below you’ll find some helpful links to some of the more common problems our customers experience.

You can’t connect your thermostat to the app

If you’re having trouble connecting your thermostat to the app, see Troubleshooting adding a Nest thermostat to the Nest app.

Your thermostat is offline

If your thermostat is offline in the nest app, see Troubleshooting when your Nest thermostat is offline.

You see an error code on your thermostat or in the app

If your thermostat shows an error code that begins with a letter (like N, W, or E) followed by a number, please go to Troubleshooting Nest thermostat error codes.

Your thermostat temperature changes unexpectedly

If your thermostat seems to have a mind of its own and sets itself to a temperature that you don’t want, you may have an issue with the temperature schedule. Please see the article about Nest thermostat temperature schedules to learn how they work and how to make changes if needed.

Your thermostat switches to and from Eco Temperatures unexpectedly

If you see one or more of the symptoms listed below, please go to Troubleshooting Home/Away Assist.

  • Your thermostat switches to ECO even though you’re home.
  • Your thermostat stays in ECO even if you’re home.
  • Your thermostat takes a long time to switch to and from ECO.
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