Nest Installation Photo Log

tl;dr: Mrs. Nordan vs. Nest thermostat! Will it take an afternoon to install? Will we ruin our house in the process? No on both counts!

In June we installed a Nest Learning Thermostat in chez Nordan; I helmed the camera for the obligatory unboxing post, but promptly got occupied with other things and left the pics to languish on my laptop. Better late than never? For context on why I’m posting this months after the fact, see “Installing a Nest, Investing in Nest.”

Challenge accepted.

What’s in the box. What you can’t see here (because we were speeding through it and/or I am a lazy photographer) is that the screwdriver, wall screws, anchors, etc. needed to get the thing mounted are in the box too.

On the chopping block: The inscrutable Honeywell thermostat that we’re replacing.

Honeywell with the faceplate off. See those wires? They provide power and talk to the HVAC system. Our mission is to get them plugged into the right spots on the Nest.

The Nest box includes little labels to wrap around the wires as you unplug them, so you won’t forget which is which when you have to plug them back in. We duly attach them.

Penciling in holes where we’ll put the anchors for the wall screws. More user-friendliness: Note that the Nest’s backplate has a level built into the front of it so you won’t mount the thing crooked.

Drillin’. We probably could have just bored a hole, but, you know, completeness.

In go the anchors.

Attaching the backplate.

Good. Now time to plug the wires into the tabs. The labels on the wires have letters on them that match up to the tabs, so even we can’t screw this up.


Done. Once the wires are plugged in you moosh them back before attaching the faceplate.

Faceplate goes on…

…and we’re up! Note that the display doesn’t actually look like that – it looks like a normal LCD display – it just showed up with these artifacts when captured through my camera.

Connecting the Nest to WiFi. Once we’ve done this, the stopwatch reads 22 minutes, at which time we’re done with the physical install. But, this being 2012, we wouldn’t be done without…

…software updates, of which we got three, totaling 15 minutes altogether; the Nest rebooted itself between each. This was the only annoying part of the installation and one that took longer than I expected (how big can a thermostat firmware update be?) I presume that if we hadn’t waited four months between getting the thing and installing it we wouldn’t have had three of these in a row. While it’s downloading, let’s get the iPhone app running:

App store entry. Confidence-inspiring rating.

On its way…

The app finds the Nest automatically; we have to click the thermostat itself to complete the enrollment. (I find myself wondering if/how/when this could be hacked. Be ever vigilant, Nest Labs.)


Total time: 37:09.6, roughly 22 minute install + 15 minutes of software updates.

This entry was posted in Consumers, Energy efficiency, Smart grid. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Nest Installation Photo Log

  1. AaJ says:

    It might not have taken all afternoon but it did ruin your wall (with regards to the paint job). Why did you not install the included backplate? Was it not large enough to cover the white paint left on the sides? This is a problem my household had.

    Some might say, “just repaint your wall”. Well, now you are taking a $250+ device and having to do extra work for it. This is not a premium product anymore if that is the expectation; rather it’s just an expensive product.

    It may have taken 37 minutes and 9 seconds to do this job, but the job is incomplete. Matching the paint style can sometimes be extremely tricky, especially when a wall has a two tone or sponged faux effect.

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