Nest Thermostat Review: Everything You Need to Know and How It Works

nest 3g wall

Smart home devices are all the rage these days, and the Nest is leading the charge for thermostats. Does this device live up to the hype? In this nest thermostat review, we’ll tell you everything there is to know about this nifty device.

What is Nest and How Does It Work?

The Nest is a smart thermostat, which are devices that work on their own to some degree in order to reduce the energy output of your home. These gadgets are controlled through mobile apps via Wi-Fi, but also have the similar manual controls like the model currently on your wall. The Nest utilizes a rotary dial along with its app and can even be voice controlled if you own a Google Home.

Since energy saving is the name of the game, the Nest learns your schedule and creates an eco-friendly heating/cooling cycle for your home. It delivers a progress report periodically to show you that it works, too. This is not only great for the environment, but it significantly cuts down the cost of your utility bill.

Tapping into to both your heater and air conditioning, Nest switches between the two to create your ideal temperature at a fraction of the energy typically required to do so. It establishes a minimum and maximum temperature when you leave to save cost even further.

Nest itself is a leader in smart home devices, with this thermostat continuing their reputation for excellence. Other Nest products include smoke alarms, security systems, door locks, and other high-tech alternatives to everyday home features that communicate with one another.

What Makes Nest Unique?

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While some smart devices are difficult to install, Nest is known for their quick and easy installation. Its packaging comes with everything you need to get started, including a screwdriver and mounting screws. The base that comes with it even has a built-in leveler to ensure your device is aligned straight with the wall.

What makes the Nest shine amongst its competition are the various technological features employed in its design. For instance, a Sunblock feature keeps the thermostat from turning on or off when hit with direct sunlight that warms its surface. It includes a far-field sensor that recognizes movement from across the room, lighting up the display to show either the temperature, time, or weather forecast.

The main feature Nest employs its ability to learn your temperature preferences and create a customized, energy-efficient schedule from them. The device takes roughly a week to pick up on how you like your home to feel. Afterward, Nest uses a series of sensors and algorithms to cool the house when you sleep, warm it up in the morning, or change the temperature however you usually would.

This automatic function also learns your daily schedule. It understands when you leave for work, evening out the temperature to save on energy costs, and begins to return your home’s temp to normal shortly before you usually arrive home. If you’re generally home for the weekend, Nest will understand and accommodate.

Most thermostats rely on geofencing to determine your phone’s location, allowing them to understand when you are home and when you’ve left. Nest has the ability to interact with hundreds of other smart devices, mainly the rest of the company’s catalog. In doing so, it can tell if you’ve left home even if you leave your phone behind via locking systems or home security systems.

This gives the Nest a distinct advantage over other models that would normally kick into away mode if your phone reception wasn’t the greatest at any point in time. Other compatible device platforms include:

  • Insteon
  • WeMo
  • Wink
  • Lutron
  • And Vivant, just to name a few.

So, if you leave the house and have smart lighting, Nest will turn them off for you in case you forget. That’s just one example, but you get the idea. You can use Google Home or the Android App to control the device.

Topping off its list of unique features is added security via two-factor authentication on the app. The majority of smart thermostats have yet to offer this, but they should, given the security risks associated with a home full of connected gadgets.

Is It Worth the Price?

The main drawback in this Nest thermostat review, and hopefully anyone else’s, is the price. At the cost of nearly [amazon_link asins=’B0131RG6VK|B0131RG6VK|B0131RG6VK’ template=’PriceLink’ store=’conservinst-20|conservinst_ca-20|conservinst_uk-21′ marketplace=’US|CA|UK’], you might think that this smart device is only for the well-to-do. It’s steep, especially for a thermostat, and we agree entirely.

Throw in expert installation, and you’re looking at another $140. If you have your heart set on one of these gadgets, then skip the expert help. Installing a Nest is a no-brainer, taking ten minutes tops.

So, how can anyone justify such an outlandish price tag? Unless you’re a “tech junkie” who has to have the latest gadgets, then it is essential to look at the energy saving capabilities the Nest provides.

The company offers a savings calculator that can give you an approximate understanding of how much less you’ll spend on heating and cooling costs with their product. While the average customer saves roughly 12% on their heating bill and 15% on their cooling bill, according to Nest, it never hurts to know what you could potentially save.

The calculator takes your zip code, home size, heating type, and air conditioner into account as it gathers other information from similar homes in your area. If you fell into those average percentages, this smart thermostat would save you anywhere from $131 to $145 a year in energy costs.

That means the Nest your pay for itself in less than two years. It’s certainly worth consideration, even though it is a steep initial investment.

Public Perception

Overall, Nest thermostat reviews are overwhelmingly positive. Some customers did note that the thermostat stops working in negative temperatures while others experienced malfunctions in just a few devices, which were quickly addressed by the company.

Other than that, users were thrilled with its functionality and sleek design. Several noted that they were able to save big on their utility bills, while nearly everyone commented on how simple it was to set up.

water glasses thermostat

How the Nest Stacks Up

The Nest’s three main competitors are the ecobee4, Bosch Connected Control, and Honeywell RTH9580. All four devices share voice control capability along with their eco-friendly benefits, as well as an application for remote control.

The Bosch model lacks the ability to learn your routine and preferences, instead utilizing a programmable seven-day cycle to deliver its energy saving capabilities. It is much larger and square-shaped, forgoing the turn dial for a full touchscreen display.

The Honeywell also lacks the intuitive program found on the Nest, though its programmable options do surpass the Bosch. Aside from that, Honeywell and Bosch have a very similar model.

The ecobee4 is the closest alternative to the Nest. This model has Amazon Alexa voice controls built in and can keep track of temperatures in different rooms via remote sensors. However, it still does not have the technology that allows Nest to adapt to your preferences and lifestyle.

Both the ecobee4 and Nest lead smart thermostats in the ability to sync up with various smart devices, but the latter remains superior in the number of these gadgets it can communicate with. Nest also remains superior with its ability to use both geofencing and other devices to know when you’ve left the house.

What We Think

Honestly, this device is fantastic for anyone who wants to cut back on their energy usage. It’s simple integration with other smart gadgets, and user-friendly interface makes it as fun to use as it is practical. Nest is easily the leader in smart technology at this point in time, and this thermostat proves that.

This product is excellent for both the eco-friendly and technology lover. Plus, it looks great no matter what your home décor style is. If you don’t mind making the initial investment, then this is a wonderful way to cut back on those heating and cooling bills. Given the ample amount of positive feedback from customers and businesses, this product is worth the price.

Coupons and Deals

From time to time, Nest will have various deals on their website. Most of the time they come in the form of a 10% discount, which would mean $25 in savings. If you have your heart set on one of these thermostats, however, there are better ways to save.

Both Walmart and Amazon carry this smart device at a lower price than retail. At the time of this writing, the third generation Nest thermostat is $219 at Walmart and $220 on Amazon. There are also listing on eBay for as low as $179, strictly looking at never-before-used items.

Choosing the stainless-steel option instead of copper or white will also save you anywhere from $5 to $20 depending on the seller. While these colors might look better in some homes, the stainless-steel variant looks lovely when placed on nearly any surface.