The home automation system has gone from being something complex and involving a specific installation in the home to being something affordable and that can be adapted to any house, even those of older construction. Now there are a lot of devices to domotize your home like smart speakers, smart bulbs, programmable plugs, or devices like the Google Nest thermostat.
The Google Nest thermostat can be a good alternative and/or complement to the smart speakers, bringing other advantages and different functions to your home. If you want to discover more about this invention, I invite you to continue reading this guide…
Serie Nest de Google
Google’s Nest is a series of smart home devices launched by the search engine company. But not only are there thermostats, you can also find routers, smart speakers, or smart screens. For example, you must distinguish between:
- : the device that interests us in this article and of which you can read more information in the following sections.
- Google Nest Hub: it is an intelligent display. It integrates Google Assistant as a virtual assistant and you can ask it for things by means of one-time commands. The advantage over smart speakers is that it has a screen where you can also see visual information. For example, you can ask it to show you the weather, or to play a video of a recipe, etc. By the way, there is also a MAX version with a larger screen size.
- Google Nest WiFi: consists of a router and a wireless access point (or several to create a mesh). With this, Google aims to end the problems of WiFi coverage at once, reaching every corner of your home (up to 210 m2) in an intelligent way.
- Google Nest Mini: a smart speaker in Mini format to install anywhere in your home. Google presented it with Google Assistant to ask you things with voice commands and as an evolution of your Google Home.
- : Google wanted to go a little further by launching this intelligent device that is basically a smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) detector. Obviously, it has been enhanced so that it knows where the danger really is and reports it through a mobile app. In addition, it has a presence detector and also allows you to light your way …
What is the Nest thermostat?
The Nest Thermostat is not just a simple thermostat that tells you what temperature it is in your home, it is much more. It’s a smart device that you can take advantage of, to get information about temperature, safety, etc. Google has taken great care in its design and efficiency, as well as in the capabilities it provides.
This home automation gadget can be integrated with your usual heating system, making it able to control it to save energy and maintain the right temperature at all times without you having to worry about anything. Only by using its Android app you can do what you want from where you want.
As a connected device, the Nest thermostat has a cloud-connected learning system, so it will be smarter and learn by experience to determine the time it takes for the house to heat up, as well as the gradual loss of temperature. That way you can know more about when and how to act on your heating, with minimum boiler usage to make your gas and electricity bill affordable.
In addition, by consuming less energy, your home can be kept at the temperature you want by being much more ECO and environmentally friendly. You could even control your home’s hot water system. Everything is centralized and designed to offer you comfort and convenience.
According to Google, the Nest thermostat is compatible with combi boilers, heating only boilers, hot water tanks, underfloor heating systems, condensing boilers (with OpenTherm standard), and even air source and geothermal heat pumps.
More technical details are:
- Screen: 24-bit color LCD, 5.3 cm in diameter and 480x480px resolution Pixel density is 229 DPI.
- Sensors: temperature, relative humidity, motion detector (near and far) and ambient light.
- Materials: plastic and stainless steel ring.
- Dimensions: 8.4×3.2 cm
- Weight: 244 grams
Nest installation and configuration
Installing Google Nest is not too complicated if you are a handyman. The purchase package includes both Google Nest and a junction box called Heat Link, which is the link or interface to connect the Nest thermostat to your home’s air conditioning system.
And by the way, Google has created an extensive network of official installers who will do everything for you themselves for about 90 euros if you don’t know. However, if you know what you’re doing, you can choose to proceed on your own and follow these steps.
Once the package arrives and you take it out of the box, the steps to follow for the installation are
- Connect the Nest thermostat to the Heat Link. You can do it wirelessly or with a couple of wires. Ideally, the former saves you the trouble of wires and allows you to place the Heat Link next to (or instead of) the boiler thermostat and the Nest thermostat in the living room or master bedroom. A 5v USB power adapter for the thermostat is also included in the kit.
- Both the Nest and Heat Link thermostats are ready to be screwed to the wall if you prefer. They can also be placed on a (sold separately) or wherever you wish.
- Turn off your boiler and cut the light to manipulate the cables (it will avoid accidents with the discharges). Your old boiler thermostat should have two wires (there may be others with more wires). To connect it, follow the guide where it explains all the cases. The Heat Link has several connection ports to adapt to all types of boilers, so you should follow the steps for your specific case.
- Once the cables are connected, you can close the Heat Link cover and turn it back on. Turn on the boiler as well.
- Now, turn on the Nest thermostat and the screen will light up to start configuring it following the software wizard which is very simple. At the end, in 15 or 30 minutes you will have it ready. By the way, Nest has a battery, so if it is charged you can take it to other rooms…
- The configuration wizard is shown on the screen and you can navigate through the menus using the steel ring as a roulette to select what you want and then click on the screen to accept. It’s that easy!
- Now, the first thing to do is to select the WiFi network in your home that it detects. Also the connection with the chosen Heat Link (wired or wireless). Also select your location in your area to determine the weather and know how to adapt the temperature in the room. Of course, choose the language and temperature unit (degrees Celsius for Europe).
- At the end, you will make a test run. If everything went well, it will finish with that and show the temperature on screen (desired and ambient).
- If you want, at any time you can configure the information displayed on the screen. For example, if you do not want it to show the temperature, you can set it to show a digital clock or imitate an analog clock, and even the weather forecast .
As I said, it is not a simple thermostat. It has more capabilities than you can imagine. Among its most outstanding features are:
- Thermostat: you can vary the desired temperature of a room, turn the heating off or on when it reaches a suitable temperature, turn the system back on if the temperature is no longer the one set, program various temperatures depending on the day, etc.
- Intelligence: learn from habits to create a personalized program. Recognize the preferences of each home, according to how you interact with the thermostat to adjust the temperature without your intervention. Generate a temperature schedule and understand the heating and cooling cycles after the first few days of use to become more efficient.
- Connectivity: through the mobile app you will be able to interact with it from wherever you are. Even from any other computer with a web browser.
- Sensors: if it does not detect presence in the house, then it will lower the temperature to save.
- Ecosystem: there are many other products compatible with the Nest thermostat to continue to domotize your home and extend its capabilities. For example, with the Phillips Hue bulb, Whirlpool appliances, security surveillance cameras (both indoor and outdoor), etc. For example, you could install security cameras and see what is happening from Nest’s own app.
Is the Nest thermostat worth it?
- You have an older heating system with a basic thermostat or this thermostat has broken down. In that case, a Nest thermostat can replace your traditional thermostat and make things easier and much more efficient, reducing your energy bill. Therefore, this would be the case that is most worthwhile.
- If you already have a programmable thermostat, then it is no longer so clear that the Nest thermostat is worth the effort. On the one hand, the energy savings you can achieve with the Nest is minimal, although somewhat more ECO. But it is true that with the programmable thermostat you will not have the extra capabilities that a Nest provides. For example, the possibility of controlling it from the mobile app, or the use of the domotic devices compatible with the ecosystem…
- You already have a domotic home with a smart thermostat, so the truth is that it is not worth having a Nest. It won’t bring too many improvements in comfort or efficiency…