Nest Learning Thermostat Review

Want to save 10 to 12% on your heating bills and 15% on cooling bills? You’re reading the right review! Smart thermostats can help you save money by only using energy when it’s actually needed. Unlike regular thermostats, smart thermostats can sense when someone is in the room or even home so it doesn’t waste energy heating or cooling empty rooms. They’re also easier to control then regular thermostats, with voice commands, geofencing, and the like.

In this review, I’m looking at the Nest Learning Thermostat, a really cool option from the Google-owned company Nest. I’ll be reviewing the Nest Learning Thermostat in terms of its design, installation, features, and app before making a recommendation at the end. Is the Nest Learning Thermostat for you? Keep reading to find out.

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Nest Learning Thermostat
Nest Learning Thermostat
Nest Learning Thermostat

After a week of usage, the Nest Learning Thermostat will learn your schedule so you never have to worry about your home's temperature again. 

Nest Learning Thermostat Design

Nest Learning Thermostat
Nest Learning Thermostat

The Nest Learning Thermostat has a 24-bit color LCD screen with 229 pixels per inch. The thermostat itself is only a few inches wide, so it won’t be a huge eyesore in your home. I was a bit surprised that the screen isn’t touchscreen, but I do like that you use it like a regular thermostat, by adjusting the ring. Sometimes if it ain’t broke there’s no reason to fix it!

Now, in terms of your home’s HVAC system, the Nest Learning Thermostat works with low-voltage, 24-volt systems. That means that it won’t work with wired remote sensors, some micro-controller based systems, proprietary systems, high impedance systems, and more. It’s important to make sure that your home is compatible before buying a smart thermostat of any kind. The good news? The Nest Learning Thermostat doesn’t require a c-wire, which lets the 24-voltage connect to the thermostat. Plus, it’s ENERGY STAR-certified, so you know you can trust it.

Aesthetically, the Nest Learning Thermostat is available in a bunch of neutral colors including polished steel, black, mirror black, white, copper, stainless steel, and brass. You can have up to 20 Nest thermostats in your home with three homes per Nest account. The Nest Learning Thermostat will only use one kWh of power per month, operating on a rechargeable battery and connecting to the Nest app through Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Now, it’s clearly not necessary to have a Nest Learning Thermostat in every room, which is why Nest also offers the Nest Temperature Sensor. It’s a simple circular sensor that communicates with the thermostat to monitor the temperatures in different rooms. You can put it on a wall or a shelf, and since it’s white and less than two inches wide, it definitely won’t catch anyone’s eye. The Nest Temperature Sensors are battery-operated with a life of about two years, connecting with the Nest Learning Thermostat via Bluetooth. Just make sure it’s within 50 feet of your thermostat to work!

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Nest Sensor Thermostat
Nest Sensor Thermostat
Nest Sensor Thermostat

To get the most specific information about the temperature in different rooms of your home, you'll need a Nest Sensor Thermostat in addition to your Nest Thermostat E or Nest Learning Thermostat. 

And that’s it for design!

Nest Learning Thermostat Features

Scheduling the Nest Learning Thermostat
Scheduling the Nest Learning Thermostat

Obviously, the main purpose of a thermostat is to sense a room’s temperature and change it, but the Nest Learning Thermostat takes it several steps further. Not only can it sense temperature, but also a bunch of other useful measurements, including:

  • Humidity: This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but I think it’s important because humidity affects how warm a room feels, even if it’s not reflected in the temperature itself.
  • Proximity: The Nest Learning Thermostat can sense if you walk past it and adjust accordingly.
  • Occupancy: This difference is pretty subtle, but occupancy means that the Nest Learning Thermostat can measure body heat, finding out if you’re home, not home, or home but sleeping.
  • Ambient Light: This means that the Nest Learning Thermostat can dim and brighten according to the light in the room, so you never have to adjust it yourself.

Of course, you have complete control over your Nest Learning Thermostat and there are many ways to exert that control. You can set your thermostat on schedules or create scenes, groups of thermostats you’ve customized to your liking.

smart-thermostat-reviews
Smart Thermostat Schedules

You can also link the Nest Learning Thermostat with your phone’s GPS, so your house can prepare for your arrival, which is called geofencing. Finally, the Nest Learning Thermostat integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, allowing for some easy voice commands.

smart-thermostat-review
Smart Thermostat Geofencing

Now, what sets the Nest Learning Thermostat apart from its predecessor, the Nest Thermostat E is its artificial intelligence. After a week of your adjustments, the Nest Learning Thermostat will learn your schedule and program itself, even taking seasons into account. Plus, when the Nest Learning Thermostat senses that you’re in front of it, Farsight will display the weather, time or temperature in digital or analog. Figuring out what you should wear today just got a whole lot easier!

Of course, you’ll be able to sync the Nest Learning Thermostat up with other connected devices in your home so you can automate actions, like having you thermostat turn to a comfortable 70 degrees when your Nest Secure security system is disarmed, meaning you’re home. The Nest Learning Thermostat works with products from LIFX, Wemo, Logitech— the list goes on.

Don’t believe that your Nest Learning Thermostat is actually saving you money? Check out the energy usage report in the Nest app. You can even add up to nine users for full access, which should cover most families. After all, the more the merrier!

Installing the Nest Learning Thermostat

Installing the Nest Learning Thermostat
Installing the Nest Learning Thermostat

Installing your Nest Learning Thermostat requires only a low-voltage system and Wi-Fi. As it’s battery-operated, installation will be a lot easier than if it was hardwired into your home.

Be sure to turn off your power before you begin your installation process. Then, set up the wiring plate to cover the holes from your previous control pad. Finally, just replace the wires and the Nest app will walk you through the rest of the process.

The Nest App

The Nest Learning Thermostat on the Nest App
The Nest Learning Thermostat on the Nest App

The Nest app is another option to control your Nest Learning Thermostat. You can also be alerted if something is wrong, for example if the temperature in your house is so low that the pipes could burst. While the app has a decent 3.8 rating from the Google Play store, it only got a 2.1 rating from the Apple store, so it may not be the best choice for iPhone users.

Get Best Offer
Nest Learning Thermostat
Nest Learning Thermostat
Nest Learning Thermostat

After a week of usage, the Nest Learning Thermostat will learn your schedule so you never have to worry about your home's temperature again. 

Recap of the Nest Learning Thermostat

At $199, the Nest Learning Thermostat is at an average cost for smart thermostats, and it has nearly all the qualities that I look for.

I think you should buy the Nest Learning Thermostat if you’d like…

  • Integrations with Amazon . Alexa, Google Assistant, etc.
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Low-voltage 24 volt system-compatible

But it does have disadvantages, like…

  • No high-voltage heater support
  • No touch-screen
  • Poorly-rated iPhone app

That’s it from me! For more options, check out my list of the best smart thermostats of 2019.

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner is an attorney and journalist with a passion for home tech and secure, efficient living. Since graduating from NYU Law, he has maintained a paradoxical existence of trying to live life adventurously while remaining staunchly risk-averse. He is torn by the dual desires of wanting to only be in Brooklyn writing about housing policy and smart home tech and aspiring to visit his friends scattered across the globe. Gabe believes that stable, safe communities are the cornerstone to a vibrant and healthy society, and it is this passion that brought him to contribute to Security Baron.

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