Nest Thermostat Review (3rd Generation) The Most Intelligent Thermostat?

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Nest Thermostat ReviewIntroduction

Welcome to my Nest Thermostat review.

The third generation of this smart thermostat was launched in September 2015.

It comes with a larger screen which has better resolution than the previous version and it works with the Amazon Alexa system, which is a digital assistant that can be controlled with your voice.

It looks very sleek and stylish and Nest is now owned by Google which means that it comes with a huge reputation.

I have tried to write one of the most detailed reviews on this device that is available.

In order to help you, I have split it into sections. And so, just click on the section that you want to know more about.

Contents

(1) Editors' Pros & Cons
(2) Basic Specifications
(3) Smart Heating Features 1
(4) Smart Heating Features 2
(5) Software & Apps
(6) Home Automation
(7) Design & Power
(8) Installation Features
(9) What's in the Box?
(10) Installation Guide
(11) Set Up Guide
(12) Buyer Pros and Cons
(13) Popular Questions

Editors’ Pros & Cons

OK, if you are in a rush let me just cut to the chase and show you a list of pros and cons.

I created these after spending many  hours reviewing lots of smart thermostats.

Pros
Cons
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Very Stlish
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Relatively Expensive
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Unique "Auto Learning" Feature
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Doesn't Use Remote Sensors
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Easy to Use Compatibility Checker
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Detailed Installation Instructions

Later in this post is a list of pros and cons that I have created from all the buyer reviews that I could find.

The Nest 3rd Generation has a cooling cycle
The Nest 3rd Generation Displays a Weather Forecast

Basic Specifications

Manufacturer
Nest Learning Labs
First Sold
September 2015
Weight
1lb
Dimensions
3.3 x 3.3 x 1.2 inches
Warranty
2 Years
Price

Smart Heating Features (1)

In the following two charts, I look at the features for this device that directly relate to heating and cooling.

Programming
Compatibility
Hot Water
Humidifier
Auto Programming, 7 Day
Majority

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Programming

The Nest does not need to manually programmed as it “learns” from your needs.

During the first week that you have your device, if you just adjust the temperature on the thermostat as needs be, the Nest will then remember these settings and keep using them.

Compatibility

The nest is compatible with about 95% of all heating and cooling systems.

There is an easy to use compatibility wizard that you use.

You can find it here.

In order to use it, you need to uninstall your existing thermostat and then compare the wires that you have in your system.

Don’t panic, it is easier and quicker than it sounds.

Hot Water 

Unusually for a smart thermostat, it can control your hot water as well as your heating.

Humidifier

This device will connect to most humidifiers and dehumidifier systems.

Some systems have one wire to control the humidifier, other systems use two wires.

If you are unsure if your system is compatible, then take a photo of your wires and send them to photos@nest.com.

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Smart Heating Features (2)

Room Sensors
Geofencing
Energy Saving
Weather Forecast

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Room Sensors

Some smart thermostats come with room sensors. These are placed in different rooms around the house and linked to the thermostat and help to monitor the temperature around the house, not just in one room.

Unfortunately, the Nest doesn’t use room sensors but it does have ten temperature sensors within it!

GeoFencing

The Nest has geofencing capabilities. Geofencing is a virtual boundary that is created using a GPS system.

When your phone is linked to your thermostat, your location can be tracked and the thermostat will know when you have left home or when you are coming home and turn the heating on or off.

Energy Saving

You will be emailed a monthly home report, part of which details your energy usage and any savings that you have made.

You will also have access to a large bank of tips and tricks about how to save energy.

Weather Forecast

This device provides you with a local weather forecast, as long as it knows your exact location.

For many users, the Nest thermostat will determine your exact location automatically but if it doesn’t you can easily set it up manually.

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The Nest Is Easily Controlled
The Nest Has a Smart App To Control It

Software & Apps Features

In this section, I explain about all the software and apps that are available for this thermostat.

iOS App
Android App
Windows
Mac

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iOS

The Nest App requires your iPhone or iPad to be running iOS 8 or later

Android

If you have an Android phone or tablet, it needs to be running version 4 or later.

Windows 10

There is no official Nest app for your Windows 10 phone or tablet. However, you can control this thermostat by using the Cozy app.

Windows PC

You can also control the Nest thermostat using your Windows PC, as long as it is running Windows 7 or later.

You need to be using the latest versions of Safari, Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

Mac

This thermostat can be controlled via a web browser on any Mac running OS X 10.9 or later.

Safari, Chrome and Firefox can be used as long as you are using the most up to date versions of them.

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Home Automation Features

In this section, I’ll explain what home automation systems that the Nest Thermostat works with.

Of the 5 systems that I have listed, the Nest will only work with two of them.

Nest
Apple Home Kit
Z Wave
Zigbee
Amazon Alexa
Voice Activation

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Nest

Nest create lots of different products in the home automation market and they have created a piece of software that enables them all to be synced.

Amazon Alexa

If you have the Amazon Echo system installed in your home, you can control this thermostat by talking to Alexa.

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The Nest Can Be Placed in the Hallway
The Nest Can Be Placed In Your Kitchen

Design & Power Features

In this section, I will look at the design and power features of this device.

Different Colors
Material
Power
Touch Screen
Easy Install
Stainless Steel
110V AC

Color

The thermostat comes in four colors; copper, stainless steel, white and black.

Material

The device is made from stainless steel for the surround.

Power

The Nest needs to be powered by a 24W C (Common) Wire which you will find in most heating and cooling systems.

Touch Screen

Easy Install

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What’s in the Box?

When you buy a 3rd generation Nest, these are the components that are in the box.

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Nest thermostat display.

Thermostat base.

Trim kit.

Steel plate.

Mounting screws and wire labels.

Nest screwdriver

Installation guide.

Welcome guide.

Pro installation card.

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Installation Guide

The official installation guide details the 10 steps that you need to go through in order to install the Nest thermostat.

However, there is something that you need to do first and that is to check that your system is compatible.

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  1. Switch off the power.
  2. Remove the cover of your existing thermostat.
  3. Remove jumper wires and save them.
  4. Label the wires
  5. Disconnect the wires and remove the base.
  6. Mark where the screws will go.
  7. Attach the Nest base.
  8. Connect the wires.
  9. Attach the Nest display.
  10. Turn the power back on.

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Setup Guide

There are 6 basic steps to setting up your thermostat.

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Step 1 Choose the language

Step 2 Connect to your Wi-Fi network

Step 3 Set your location- although this might have been detected automatically.

Step 4 Connect or pair the thermostat with other heating equipment.

Step 5 Select a temperature

Step 6 Run a system test.

For each step, a range of options will be displayed.

To move between the different options, twist the outer edge or ring on your Nest.

To select your preferred option, push the ring towards the wall.

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Buyer Strengths & Weaknesses

I have created these pros and cons after spending time reading lots of reviews written by people who have bought the 3rd generation Nest Thermostat.

At the time of writing (February 2017), this thermostat has a rating of 4.6 out of 5 with nearly 10, 000 written reviews. Over 9000 of these reviews are positive! That is a very strong vote of confidence.

Pros
Cons
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Easy To Install
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Size of Displayed "Actual" Temperature Too Small
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Great Customer Support
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Set Intervals Only 1 Hour, Not 30 Mins
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Auto Learning Feature
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Not Apple Home Kit Compatible
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Energy Reports
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Stops Working in Extreme Cold
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Wink & Alexa Compatibility

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Popular Questions

At the time of writing this review (February 2017), well over 1000 questions had been asked about the Nest Thermostat and 942 questions have been answered.

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The 5 most popular questions are;

  1. What is the difference between the 2nd generation and the third generation Nest thermostat?

There are three differences between the two devices.

*the third generation works with Amazon Alexa, whereas the 2nd generation doesn’t.

*The third generation has a larger display with a higher resolution and a slimmer body than the 2nd generation device.

*The third generation has 2.4 Ghz and 5 Ghz wi-fi compability whereas the 2nd generation only has 2.4 Ghz compatibility.

2. Can the app be installed on several devices at once?

Yes, it can. It can be installed on several devices (Apple and Android) which are all signed into the same Nest account.

3. If I have a 2 zone heating system, will I need two thermostats?

It is far easier to have a Nest thermostat for each heating zone.

4. Will the Nest make any clicking noises as the heating turns on or off?

There is nothing mechanical in the thermostat to make a “clicking” noise.

It has been designed to work silently.

5. If I am not at home at regular times and my pattern is completely random, will the Nest learn from this?

Not as such! However, if you pair your phone with your Nest thermostat then it can detect when you leave your house and when you are coming home.

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