Doug Toppin's Blog

My thoughts on technology and other stuff

Review of My Nest Thermostat Installation

I recently bought a Nest thermostat and installed it yesterday. The whole process took a couple of hours but the thermostat itself probably only took 15 minutes. The rest of the time was removing the old one, painting the space it left that would not be covered by the Nest and filling a couple of screw holes in the drywall. I took pictures throughout the installation and thought that it might be interesting to describe what I did. Almost everything that you need will be in the kit except for drill (maybe),spackle (fill in old drywall holes) and paint (match the wall because the Nest may be smaller). The process is very straightforward. The main thing that you need to do in advance is look at the wires in your old thermostat and and match them up with the Nest. The Nest website has a compatibility page that will help you. This one was for a Trane gas heat and air conditioner unit on the main floor of our house. It is controlled by a 4 wire thermostat (red, green, yellow, white) and was not difficult. As usual, the Apple influenced design and packaging is apparent. The thermostat being replaced was much less exciting. The package contents were the faceplate and wall mount for the unit. The first step is to turn off the HVAC circuit breaker(s). Pop the faceplate off of the old thermostat. Make a note/picture of the wire colors in use. Then remove the mounting screws and remove the unit from the wall. At this point you may need to remove any old mounting related hardware from the wall and clean up the wires. Then use spackling paste to patch up any old holes. After that you might need to paint over any spots that need it. You will probably need to mark the screw holes in the new mount and drill or start new screw holes. Make sure that you use the level in the top of the Nest to make it level correctly. Screw the Nest in and then push the wires into the matching places. After that, pop on the Nest, join your wifi network and do a little setup and it is ready to go. The Nest iPhone and iPad apps will let you view information about it as well as change settings.