Nest thermostat can’t find the Wi-Fi network

As you try to connect your Google Nest thermostat to Wi-Fi, you’ll get a list of all the nearby Wi-Fi networks it can find. 

If the network you want to connect to isn’t on the list, you may just need to wait a minute for it to appear, but there may be another problem.

Troubleshoot with these steps if you can’t connect your thermostat to Wi-Fi either during initial setup or after the Wi-Fi network has changed.

For directions to update your thermostat’s Wi-Fi SSID and password, go to our Update thermostat Wi-Fi settings article.

1. Wait a minute or two for your network to appear

The Wi-Fi network may not appear on the thermostat’s list of networks right away. Wait a minute or two and your network will probably appear. Your thermostat will continue to actively scan for Wi-Fi networks even after it shows you the initial list.

Note: It can take a few minutes for your network to appear no matter where you live, but it’s most common in places where there are a lot of Wi-Fi networks (such as an apartment building or urban neighborhood).

2. Restart the router

Sometimes, a router restart can get your network to show up on your thermostat.

1. Unplug the modem and router and wait about 60 seconds.

Note: You may have an all-in-one modem and router, or they may be separate. Make sure to unplug both before you continue. If you have an all-in-one modem and router, unplug it and wait a full 60 seconds. Then, plug it back in.

2. Plug your modem and router back in.

Note: If you have a separate modem and router, plug the modem in first and wait at least 30 seconds until it finishes restarting. Then, plug in your router.

3. Wait a few minutes before you try reconnecting your thermostat.

3. If your network is hidden, type in the name

If your Wi-Fi network is hidden (your router is set to not broadcast the name or SSID), you’ll have to enter the name manually. 

  1. In the list of networks, select the option to type in the network name or choose a different network.
  2. Enter your network’s name and password and choose your network’s security type (WPA, WEP, etc.) when prompted.

4. Test Wi-Fi with another device

If you’re still not seeing your Wi-Fi network after restarting your router, this step will help isolate the issue.

While you’re next to your Nest thermostat, try to connect to your Wi-Fi network with another device (like a mobile phone) to check if the network name appears on the list.

If the other device can’t find the network either, your router may be too far away from your thermostat or there may be a problem with it.

Try moving your router closer to your thermostat if possible.

You can also check your router’s manual, or contact your router’s manufacturer or your Internet Service Provider (ISP) for further troubleshooting.

5. Test with a Wi-Fi hotspot

If you have a second phone (or tablet with cellular data), use it as a hotspot to connect your thermostat. For instructions on how to do this, refer to your phone's manual.

If your thermostat can connect to your hotspot, this can indicate there’s an issue with your Wi-Fi network. Check your Wi-Fi router settings in step 9 to resolve any issues.

Note: Hotspot networks are not recommended for long-term use with Nest thermostats.

6. Restart your thermostat

If you’re going through setup for the first time, you can skip the Wi-Fi connection step and finish the setup interview. Then you can restart your thermostat and try connecting it again.

Restart steps depend on which thermostat you have:

Nest Thermostat

  1. On your thermostat, go to Settings Nest settings icon and then Restart.
  2. After your thermostat has finished restarting, use the Home app to try to connect again.

Nest Learning Thermostat and Thermostat E

  1. On your thermostat, go to Settings Nest settings icon and then Reset and select Restart.
  2. After your thermostat has finished restarting, go to Settings Nest settings icon and then Network and try to connect again.

Restart or reset your Nest thermostat

7. Check for wireless interference

There might be some electronics that are interfering with your thermostat’s ability to find your Wi-Fi network.

  1. Try to temporarily turn off any 2.4 GHz devices that can cause wireless interference

Here are some common 2.4 GHz devices:

  • Cordless phone
  • Baby monitors
  • Microwaves
  • Bluetooth devices
  • Wireless Video equipment 
  1. Once the suspected devices are off, try to connect your thermostat to Wi-Fi again. 
Note: If you have a Nest Learning Thermostat 3rd gen, try to connect to a 2.4 GHz network first. If that doesn’t work, then try to connect to a 5 GHz network.

8. Reset your thermostat’s network connection

If you’re still unable to connect after you've restarted your Nest thermostat, reset your thermostat’s network connection in the Settings menu and try to connect it again. For complete instructions, go to our Update thermostat Wi-FI settings article.

9. Check your Wi-Fi router settings

  1. Try to turn on your router’s 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi signal. 2.4 GHz can offer a better connection at longer ranges than 5 GHz. Refer to your router’s manual for instructions on how to do this. 

Important: 1st and 2nd gen Nest Learning Thermostats only work with 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi, so you must have 2.4 GHz turned on for these models. All other Nest thermostats work with both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz signals.

  1. Go to our Recommended Wi-Fi and network settings article for more router settings to check. You can also refer to your router’s manual, or contact your router’s manufacturer or your ISP for further troubleshooting.
Was this helpful?
How can we improve it?