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Does Nest Thermostat Work Without WiFi? Yes, But… (2023)

Does Nest Thermostat Work Without WiFi

The Nest thermostat is an excellent smart home device.

Without WiFi connection, though…

It loses some of the features that make it, well, smart.

But don’t start calling it dumb just yet.

Because even without the internet…

This thermostat is still rich with functionalities. 

Continue reading to learn:

  • What actually happens to Nest thermostats when they go offline.
  • 7 Nest thermostat features that need an internet connection to work.
  • 9 great Nest thermostat features that you can use even without WiFi.
  • And a lot more…

Does Nest thermostat work without WiFi?

The Nest thermostat works without WiFi. It’ll still be able to regulate your home temperature. You’d still be able to set a target temperature. And it’ll still follow through on the temperature schedule previously set. And with its touch bar, you’d still be able to make changes to other settings.

9 Nest thermostat features that work without WiFi

#1: Temperature regulation

You’d need the internet to use a Nest thermostat’s smart features. 

But even without a WiFi connection, a Nest thermostat is still very useful.

It won’t all of a sudden stop working. Instead, it’ll just turn into a standard digital thermostat.

Which means that it can still regulate your home’s temperature through your HVAC system.

Moreover, all Nest thermostats come with a touch bar on the right side. 

And with that, you can simply swipe up or down to change your target temperature.

So no need to worry about chilling during the winter. Or sweating buckets during summertime. 

Want a demo on how to change your target temperature easily? Watch this video below:

#2: Temperature status display

Another thing that doesn’t need WiFi is the Nest thermostat’s temperature status display.

You’ll see 4 things on your Nest thermostat’s display:

  • Your target temperature.
  • The current temperature.
  • Whether you’re on Cooling or Heating mode.
  • How long before reaching the target temperature.

Your Nest constantly updates all of these in real-time. And it won’t stop doing that even without the internet.

The reason it’s possible? 

Nest thermostats have built-in mechanisms for measuring temperatures. And none of those mechanisms need the internet to work.

#3: System mode

Nest thermostats have 3 system modes:

  • Heat.
  • Cool.
  • Heat and Cool.

You can select Heat if you only want to warm up your house. 

And, as the name suggests, Cool is for decreasing your home’s temperature. 

Now, Heat and Cool is a combination of both. Ideal for places with extreme temperatures. Such as in countries where it could get really hot during the day. And really cold at night.

And you can toggle among these modes even without WiFi. 

Simply by doing the following:

  1. Tap your Nest thermostat’s touch bar.
  2. Highlight Mode and tap.
  3. Swipe to select your preferred system mode, then tap.

#4: Temperature hold

Temperature hold is a feature that’s on most non-smart thermostats. 

And with Nest, this is another option that’ll also work fine without the internet.

You can choose this if your room is already at your ideal temperature. And you want to keep it that way. 

It also only takes a few taps to do it:

  1. Tap the thermostat’s touch bar.
  2. Swipe down and highlight Hold.
  3. Tap the touch bar to confirm.

#5: Fan mode

If your HVAC has built-in fans, you’ll also see this option on your Nest thermostat.

Fan mode is ideal for air filtering. It also helps to even out your home temperature. So there’ll be no particular spots that are too hot or too cold. 

If you’d like to select this feature:

  1. Tap your Nest thermostat.
  2. Swipe down and select Fan.
  3. Tap again to confirm your selection.

#6: Temperature schedule

One of the best features of Nest thermostats is the temperature schedule.

You can pre-set your ideal temperature when you’re home. When no one’s inside. And when you’re sleeping. 

Now you can’t actually set and change a schedule without WiFi. 

However, all the schedules you’ve previously set will still push through. Your thermostat will still automatically adjust the temperature to your liking. Even if it’s offline.

#7: Nest Leaf

Ever notice that little leaf that you’d occasionally see on your thermostat?

That’s what’s called the Nest Leaf. 

And it’s a feature that lets you know if your targeted temperature is ideal for energy saving. 

So you see, Nest can still help you conserve energy even if it’s on offline mode.

#8: Safety temperature

Safety temperature is a feature that protects your home from extreme weather. 

Basically, Nest won’t allow your home to be too cold or too hot. And that’s even if you’ve accidentally switched your Nest thermostat to Off.

This feature is always on by default. 

And the only time you’d need a WiFi with this is when modifying its settings. 

#9: Emergency Heat

Does your HVAC have a heat pump system?

If so, you’ll also see the Emergency Heat option on your Nest thermostat.

And you can turn this option on if your HVAC’s main heating system isn’t working. 

The steps to do it are simple:

  1. Tap your Nest thermostat.
  2. Slide down to Settings and tap.
  3. Select Emergency Heat, then tap.
  4. Highlight Yes and tap.

7 Nest thermostat features that won’t work without WiFi

#1: Remotely controlling the Nest Thermostat via the Home app

You can operate your Nest thermostat remotely via the Google Home app. 

This is a very convenient tool to have. 

Let’s say you’re already on your way home. 

And you want to ensure the temperature’s already perfect as soon as you arrive.

You can then easily set your targeted temperature on your phone.  

But of course, your thermostat would need WiFi for that to work. 

So you don’t get to enjoy this convenience if your Nest is offline.

#2: Voice control

“Hey Google, can you turn down the temperature a bit?”

You can actually integrate your Nest thermostat with either Google Assistant or Alexa. 

You won’t have to press anything on your phone with voice control. And you won’t have to get up to change your thermostat’s settings manually. 

But this is another smart feature that won’t work at all without the internet. 

#3: Setting and changing temperature schedules

I did mention how great the temperature schedule feature is. And that it’ll work fine even without the internet.

But you can only set and change it via the Home app. So you’d definitely need WiFi or at least cellular data for that. 

And when you do make changes, your thermostat would also need to go online. This is so it can receive the updates that you made. 

So if your thermostat can’t connect to the internet, you’ll be stuck with your old temperature schedules.

#4: Geolocation mode

Geolocation mode is another amazing feature of the Nest thermostat.

You see, you can actually allow your Home app to track your location. And through this feature, your Nest thermostat will be able to tell whether you’re home or not.

And if you’re outside, it automatically shifts into power-saving mode. 

But without WiFi, the Home app wouldn’t be able to inform the thermostat of your location. 

So you may miss out on energy-saving opportunities. 

#5: Status alerts

One of the smartest things your Nest thermostat can do is send status alerts.

These contain information about your HVAC system.

And Nest sends them via notifications on the Home app. As well as through the email associated with your account.

“What type of alerts can I receive?”

Well, you can receive early warnings and urgent alerts. So you’ll know if your HVAC is failing and needs repair or replacement. 

Unfortunately, your Nest thermostat would also need WiFi to send these. 

And you’ll risk missing out on these if you’re not able to fix your thermostat’s network connection.

#6: Energy usage chart

Another type of information that your Nest thermostat sends out is your energy usage.

Nest regularly updates an energy usage chart on your Home app. 

Here, you can track how much power you’ve consumed. And how much you’ve saved. 

But again, your Nest would require WiFi to be able to transmit these data.  

And unlike Thermostat E or Learning Thermostat….

You won’t be able to view your energy usage chart on the Nest thermostat itself.

#7: Software update

Software Update

Your Nest thermostat automatically receives software updates.

These typically include feature enhancements. As well as fixes in rare instances of bugs. 

But the only way to install these updates is via WiFi. 

So you’ll have to make do with an old firmware if your thermostat can’t go online.

People also ask:

How do I control my Nest thermostat without WiFi?

To control your Nest thermostat without WiFi, use the touch bar. You can find it on the right side of the device. You can swipe up or down to change your target temperature. You can also tap it to access other menu options.

The great thing about the Nest thermostat is that most of its functions don’t rely on the internet.

Its smart features are mostly there to provide convenience to the users. 

But as far as keeping your home as warm or as cool as you’d like…

Your Nest thermostat can do that even if it’s offline. And that’s what matters most.

What happens to Nest thermostat when WiFi goes out?

When WiFi goes out, your Nest thermostat will continue to function. It’ll essentially be a non-smart digital thermostat. You won’t be able to control it remotely via the Home app. You also won’t be able to set or change your temperature schedules. But it’d still be able to regulate your temperature.

Reading recommendation: Will Nest Thermostat Work Without Power? 3 Essential Tips