I’m not sure how to make this blog relate to my business and justify it being written – but I’m so excited that I just took 5 minutes this morning to install my Nest that I need to share it with someone. And I do work from home, so technically this is a business related purchase. (calling accountant to confirm…)
I read about Nest about a month ago. One of those tech articles that comes across your Twitter feed that catches your eye. I went to their website (with every other nerd in the world) to read more. I was immediately in “I want” mode.
Usually when I’m in that state, I just buy. One of my several faults, as my wife would agree. But I needed to justify spending twice as much as the thermostat I have currently installed on a new one. They made it easy by showing stats, that on average, I’ll save $173 in the first year of owning one, $520 in three years. Easy enough to explain to ‘the boss’. You can download their white paper here.
So I went to buy one right then and there. But of course, with everyone crashing their servers, their store was not operational. I was patient, for about 3 hours, came back, saw an opening and ordered my Nest.
1 Month later and it’s at my door. Of course, I had a rare social gathering with some friends as the FedEx man was handing me my package, so installation had to be pushed back. The fact that Nest encourages (or offers, however you’d like to word it) you to borrow one of their installation experts to come install this product for you made me a bit nervous. But knowing that: a) this is a thermostat and b) it was developed by the same people that designed the first 18 generations of the iPod – it couldn’t be that tough.
And it wasn’t.
I woke up like a little boy on Christmas morning, running downstairs to start playing with my new toy. I had read the ‘directions’ the night before in preparation. (I say ‘directions’ because like most thermostats, it’s just a matter of putting the right wire in the right circuit – no brain surgery needed.)
I did the cautious thing, which isn’t always my style, and turned off the breaker for my heating & AC units and began dismantling my old, ugly, dumb thermostat. Within 5-10 minutes, I had my Nest on the wall, looking good. I had to use one of the mounting plates that they included in the packaging. Not because of the hole, but because I didn’t want to waste time with patching old screw holes and paint drying. I wanted this up NOW. In fairness, it still looks awesome.
I ran downstairs to turn the breakers back on and sprinted back upstairs to see the magic happen. Nothing. I hung my head in dispair.
Nest has you go through a little online test to ensure that their product is compatible with your current wiring setup. I had done so correctly.. but I was worried that I had bought a product that wasn’t going to work in our house! I looked at the directions, and back at the Nest. I gave it a little shove towards the wall, hoping that it was a connectivity issue.
And then I saw it, a little green light blinking. It’s ALIVE!
Immediately, it wanted to hook up into my wi-fi. I got a little irritated dialing down to our public wi-fi ‘Young’s Guest Network’. Every time a connection in the neighborhood would become an option or it would lose the signal, I would have to restart my dial down to the bottom. But I made it, then got to enter our password like a safe combination – turning the dial for a connection.
It began downloading a software update and backing up information. My thermostat. It was downloading a software update and backing up information.
After that, I hooked up the online connection via their website and then through my iPhone app. The heater kicked on (which is good – it’s 25° outside this morning in Columbus) and so the learning begins.
I’m amazed with the beauty of this product. It looks so clean, works out of the box and was easier than expected to install.
Was it worth the extra money? You could ask me in a year when I look to see if I’ve saved the $173 that they claim I will. But I’ll tell you now – it was.
*OH* I almost forgot about possibly the coolest part of the install. Nest comes with this little screwdriver that fits perfectly in your hand and has 4 different bits that attach to the inside. I know this was a 5¢ addition to the entire operation – but it’s a very nice addition. Beside the having to look for 2-3 different screwdrivers to uninstall the old thermostat and install the new one, this thing will get some use from me.