Nest Thermostat... worth it for me?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by whyrichard, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. whyrichard macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2002

    I just moved into a house built in 1927, with a gas furnace with 4 radiators, two floors, and a cellar. there are in wall air conditioning units in the two bedrooms and the living room.

    The thermostat is in the living room...

    ... would the Nest thermostat work well for me? Would it save money over the typical ancient thermostat that is currently installed? Anyone have experience with the Nest in similar conditions?


  2. mmomega macrumors demi-god


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    The first thing to consider is you're paying $250 minimum on one thermostat so do you think you will save enough money in a short amount of time to justify buying one?
    If one is buying it for the savings how long will it take just to break even?

    I am going through the same type situation but I need to purchase 2 units because my new house has 2 separate AC/furnace units.

    I have heard a few people noting that they have saved approx $150 in a few months, some saying they saved that much in a year.

    It may still be early to tell HOW MUCH of a savings, depending on everyones usage, the thermostat could be but it does work.

    I like do devices and the savings will be a plus so I will most likely preorder the new models this weekend. I also look at it with a 5yr plan in mind, do I think that after 5 yrs that the units will pay for themselves plus additional savings to make it worth it? Yes, I believe so from what I have read so far.
  3. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I've had half a dozen programmable thermostats over the years. They have all failed in bizarre ways. Most recently I had a Lux model, highly rated by Consumer Reports go completely bonzo on me and cycle my AC compressor too often. I almost ruined an AC compressor with that thing. The company sent me a new one but I decided I was done with programmable thermostats.

    It seems that in the spring and fall, putting them in "dual" mode where they cool some days and heat other days was simply asking too much. So now I have a simple "set and walk away" thermostat.

    I like the idea of the Nest. It could be a set and walk away device that "adapts" without a lot of interaction on my part. One problem is my thermostat is in a room nobody goes in all day long so the thing would constantly be putting itself in away mode.

    I do plan to do something to help with my heat bills but I'll focus on energy savings like new windows or better insulation before I focus on gadgets. I got snailmail from our local utility saying my house uses 60% more energy than other houses the same size. I don't find this that hard to believe with our crappy old windows and my wife's choice to keep it smokin' hot in the winter and refrigerator cold in the summer.

    To make a long story short, there isn't much a gadget can do to improve energy use in a building with an inefficient furnace (ours is 80 percent) and drafty old 1960s era windows.
  4. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    You might want to check with and see if they support such a configuration of hardware.
  5. JoeBlow74, Oct 5, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2012

    JoeBlow74 macrumors regular

    Aug 2, 2012

    You would save more money on electricity updating your furnace to one of those heat recovery systems. There are some very cool setups in residential heating and cooling now. Heat recovery uses most of your return air heat and mixes fresh air from a fresh air intake and blows it into your house. By doing this, you save on your gas/electric bill. Plus, with a variable speed blower, you can control your home waaaay better than some of the basic systems. You could also integrate a glycole solar hot water loop on your roof to provide hot water for showers or heat, if needed. For your AC needs, I would go with a basic AC unit (not heat pump) and install a few solar panels to provide power to just the compressor/condenser part of your split system. This is how you would really save some money on your heating and cooling. This is all dependant on if you can afford it.

    Check this out. It is called an air ventilator. This recovers heat from your return air in the winter and pre-conditions fresh air in the summer.

    When my furnace goes bad, I plan on replacing it with a nice ultra efficient heating/cooling system like what I mentioned.
  6. whyrichard thread starter macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2002
    Is it worthwhile if my summer air conditioning comes from in window units?

    Also, is it a good idea to spend one winter without the nest as a base from which to base any improvements?

    A compelling feature for me is the ability to anticipate the time it takes for a furnace and radiator system to heat up.


  7. ViperDesign macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2007
    I have no idea about your stuff, but I love the Nest. It saved me plenty this past summer. Summer on average was 5 degrees hotter, yet we used less than last year.

    Very cool tech
  8. spencecb macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2003
    Your window A/C units need to go. Those things are completely inefficient, and the Nest can't do a thing for you there. I'd take the advice of others in updating your heating/cooling system and windows first before you spend money on the Nest.

    We live in a very old construction, too (live in Chicago) but it was renovated a couple years back. Our windows need better insulation, which is a project before the end of the month.

    Our Nest arrives next week, and I'm hoping to see some big savings next Summer.


    This is very good to know, as we all experienced a very hot summer. It was over 100 multiple times here in Chicago, so I'm very excited to see what the Nest will do for us next summer.
  9. SR45 macrumors 65832


    Aug 17, 2011
    Almost bought one, but the programmable unit I had went south on me, and gave me issues, so I held back on a purchase of the expensive Nest.. Wish Nest would offer a non programmable one that looked as nice as the one now being sold, or one that does not have so many adjustments to program. ;)
  10. spencecb macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2003
    But that would completely go against the entire philosophy of why Nest Labs exists as a company. They didn't just design Nest to look nice because people wanted a prettier thermostat on their walls. They designed it to make a positive environmental and financial impact. It's just an added bonus that it looks great.
  11. SmithErick macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2011
    Greensboro, NC
    I live in a Townhouse that is 6 years old, I love mine. I got it more as a gadget than anything. I love being able to set a password so the lady can't mess with the settings. It has saved me $25 on the past 5 power bills....
  12. SR45 macrumors 65832


    Aug 17, 2011
    Correct, but I just wish they could for those that don't really need all the bells and whistles, just some of them ;)
  13. Jigga Beef macrumors regular

    Jan 11, 2009
    Philadelphia, Pa
    I love my Nest thermostat, its saved me about $10 dollars on the past 5 power bills each.

    I have a very unpredictable schedule and love to be able to turn on or off my thermostat when i am out of town and on my way back home.

    But it is big cost up front so everyones situation will be different.
  14. shay007 macrumors newbie

    Oct 14, 2013
    Does nest save money

    well first you should check were you can improve you home isolation because
    it's very important for saving energy$money.
    I'm very satisfy with my Nest Thermostat.
    it will save you money if you teach him correctly.
    1. you should keep temperature in reasonable temp, meaning a temp that the Thermostat can reach not extremely high at winter and not extremely low at summer.
    i bought my nest not just for saving energy,it has many other benefits that I'm enjoying from.

    you can find more here.

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