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Save Energy On Home Heating With The Nest

Updated on February 12, 2018

I put off buying one of these thermostats because I couldn't justify the need as I already had a programmable thermostat at home. Since I first saw the Nest, I liked the look and the concept and I followed its progress from 1st generation to the 2nd.

I was in the big box store one weekend, lured by a sale on a clothes washer, and spied a Nest display. I was familiar with the 1st generation so I took a closer look at the display. It claimed a reduction in heating costs over the year that would more than pay for itself. In Canada where it seems like it is winter 6 months of the year, that's not only a big claim but more like a personal challenge.

We walked out of the store with a scheduled delivery of our new high-efficiency washer, and I had a Nest neatly tucked under my arm.

I was totally blown away by the packaging. The marketing department nailed it. Spoiler alert: Don't view the photos below in the gallery if you intend to buy a Nest. Let it be like a Birthday present and you too can marvel at the way it was packaged. Attention to detail makes it.

It only took 30 minutes to install after I read the instructions - yes I read the instructions. I wanted to see how well they were written. There were many hints that were given that were pure gold. Take a photo of your existing thermostat wiring before you remove it from the wall. Tape the wires to a pencil so they don't fall back into the wall cavity while you are working on the new stat. As an electrician myself I could see that happening. Believe me, that would be frustrating.


Nest Learning Thermostat, 2nd Generation, Works with Alexa
Nest Learning Thermostat, 2nd Generation, Works with Alexa

It is always best practice to do your research before you purchase. Make sure you are buying a compatible device ( check the Warning text below) and that you have the latest version. It may not be wise to purchase an older model at a discount for it may not be supported. Research, research, research.

 

The best feature of this programmable thermostat is that it is linked to the Internet so you have access to your thermostat from your smartphone or computer, even if you were away on holidays. A free app is available to download and install.

I have used the device now for over two weeks and I am totally blown away. They call it a programmable thermostat but I would say it is more like a self-programmable thermostat. After 7 days of setting the thermostat each time you walked by the Nest, it remembered the settings and created a schedule. It couldn't be any easier. You can go into the schedule and edit it as you see fit or leave it. It has an auto-away setting so when we leave the house and it sees no activity, the temperature is set back automatically saving energy and money. Awesome.

Now I know when I get home, my home will be set at a comfortable temperature, even if I disrupt my normal schedule and get home early or later than normal. I just open the app on my smartphone and have access to the house temp as well as the outside temp of the local area. I can see how this is going to save me money.

And after seeing the new products on the website, I know what I am asking for next. The smoke and carbon monoxide detector. How about you? Are you ready for a Nest?

Warnings: Before You Buy

There are a few things to research and think about before you buy any device that is connected to the Internet. As with any device that is connected, it can be hacked. It may not be devastating in its actions but it could be used in causing a site to a website to crash by a hacker controlling various online device to constantly poll an IP address. The only way to know is by regularly checking your network traffic to see if there is an increase in activity from your device. Staying updated with your device drivers for your router and the Nest will go a long way in keeping you safe.

Another thing to research before you purchase you Nest is to see if your current WiFi router is compatible. Here is a link to the Nest Support page dealing with that info. goo.gl/7u92iQ


Photo Gallery

Click thumbnail to view full-size
This is a company that shows it takes pride in the fact it has a product that is not only good for you but good for the planet.The first thing you see is what you bought - a Nest. No cheap packaging or bubble-wrapped mysteries. Just the Nest.Under the first layer, which contained the Nest, was everything you needed.  There was even a custom screwdriver. I was not expecting that.Under that layer were a few options that you may or may not need for your install. Two different wall plates for different install options.It took less than 30 minutes to install. Yes I read the instructions so I could rate them as well. The biggest hint  Take a photo of existing stat.
This is a company that shows it takes pride in the fact it has a product that is not only good for you but good for the planet.
This is a company that shows it takes pride in the fact it has a product that is not only good for you but good for the planet.
The first thing you see is what you bought - a Nest. No cheap packaging or bubble-wrapped mysteries. Just the Nest.
The first thing you see is what you bought - a Nest. No cheap packaging or bubble-wrapped mysteries. Just the Nest.
Under the first layer, which contained the Nest, was everything you needed.  There was even a custom screwdriver. I was not expecting that.
Under the first layer, which contained the Nest, was everything you needed. There was even a custom screwdriver. I was not expecting that.
Under that layer were a few options that you may or may not need for your install. Two different wall plates for different install options.
Under that layer were a few options that you may or may not need for your install. Two different wall plates for different install options.
It took less than 30 minutes to install. Yes I read the instructions so I could rate them as well. The biggest hint  Take a photo of existing stat.
It took less than 30 minutes to install. Yes I read the instructions so I could rate them as well. The biggest hint Take a photo of existing stat.

What's Next?

I'll be looking at getting a smoke and carbon monoxide detector. The Nest version, of course, calls you on your phone if there is an alarm.

How much control do you have on your house climate? Would the Nest be something you'd consider?

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    • Northerntrials profile imageAUTHOR

      Northerntrials 

      4 years ago

      @Nico1: I just received my first Nest report. It shows my energy savings over the course of a month and even ranks me with all other Nest owners. I'm in the top 30%. It's cool. Does your thermostat send you email?

    • Nico1 profile image

      Nico1 

      4 years ago

      I;ve heard about these before. Need to check them out again as I have killer energy bills each winter

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