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Can Google Nest Wi-Fi Connect to Existing Router?

Last Updated Mar 2, 2022
Google Nest Wi-Fi on Table

Google Nest Wi-Fi is an impressive addition to the integrated Google Nest family of smart home products. It can increase the range of your Wi-Fi signal to give your home a consistent connection throughout. If you already have a good router, however, you probably want to know if you can use it with Google Nest Wi-Fi.

A Google Nest Wi-Fi router can connect to an existing wireless router, but this is not recommended because it may cause issues with the wireless network’s connections. The Nest Wi-Fi router is designed to replace an existing router. The Nest Wi-Fi points must be connected to a Google or Nest Wi-Fi router; they cannot connect to a third-party router.

Before deciding if you want to use your existing router in addition to the Nest Wi-Fi router, you should know the details of how it works and the potential issues you may experience by using the two together.

Connecting Google Nest Wi-Fi to an Existing Router

It is unnecessary to use your existing Wi-Fi router with the Nest Wi-Fi system. The Nest Wi-Fi router connects to your Internet modem and replaces your existing router. Because you can extend the range of the router’s signal using Nest points, you do not need to use multiple routers.

All Wi-Fi enabled devices in your home can connect to the Nest Wi-Fi router. Up to 200 devices can be connected to one Nest router. You can even hardwire devices to your Nest router using a LAN switch.

How to Use Nest Wi-Fi with an Existing Router

To use Nest Wi-Fi with a third-party router, make sure that the third-party router is connected to the modem, and the Nest router is connected to the third-party router. If the routers are plugged in the other way around, the Nest Wi-Fi points will not be able to connect to the Wi-Fi network.

Another common issue occurs when the Nest Wi-Fi network and your previous Wi-Fi network can’t communicate with each other. To avoid this issue, you can put the existing router in bridge mode. Nest Wi-Fi users who have a modem/router combo will also need to use bridge mode.

Follow the steps below to put a third-party router into bridge mode:

  1. Ensure that the router is plugged directly into the modem.
  2. Plug the router into a computer using an Ethernet cable. If your computer doesn’t have an Ethernet port, you can buy an adapter that fits your computer.
  1. Open an Internet browser on the computer and enter your router’s IP address in the address bar. (Click here for directions on how to find the IP address on your device.)
  2. Enable bridge mode in the router’s settings. The specific steps to access this setting vary, so look for additional directions from your router’s manufacturer if needed.

Google Wi-Fi and Nest Wi-Fi Compatibility

Nest Wi-Fi is entirely compatible with the old Google Wi-Fi system. You can purchase new Nest Wi-Fi points and connect them to an old Google Wi-Fi router, or you can connect your old Google Wi-Fi points to a new Nest Wi-Fi router.

The new Nest Wi-Fi is like the original Google Wi-Fi but with some upgrades. Nest Wi-Fi includes Google Assistant for voice commands and comes in three color options; it also has a broader range on both its router and points.

How Nest Wi-Fi Works

Nest Wi-Fi is a mesh wireless network; the system consists of two parts: The Nest Wi-Fi router and Nest points.

The points extend your home’s Wi-Fi network so that you have a stable connection throughout your property. You can add up to 32 points to one router, although Google recommends no more than five.

Google Nest Wi-Fi Range

With the ability to add so many points to your wireless network, you are guaranteed a stable Wi-Fi connection even in basements, back houses, and large yards. The table below shows the maximum range of your Wi-Fi network based on how many points you have.

DevicesMaximum Range
Nest Wi-Fi router with no points2,200 square feet
Nest router with one point3,800 square feet
Nest router with two points5,400 square feet

Based on these numbers, we can predict that for each additional Wi-Fi point you add, your Wi-Fi range will increase up to 1,600 square feet.

Additional Features

In addition to wireless network expansion, Nest Wi-Fi offers several other helpful features. Here’s an overview of the features you get with this Wi-Fi network:

  • The router and points have Google voice assistant built-in.
  • Google Nest points can be used as Bluetooth speakers to play music.
  • In the Google Home app, you can prioritize devices that you want to have a faster Internet speed.
  • Parents can set timers to turn off the Wi-Fi connection to individual devices to limit children’s screen time.

Final Thoughts

While it is possible to connect Nest Wi-Fi to an existing third-party Wi-Fi router, it is complicated and unnecessary. The Nest Wi-Fi router is a reliable router that is adequate for most peoples’ Wi-Fi needs, even in gaming. Nest Wi-Fi is also fully compatible with Google Wi-Fi, so if you have this older system, you can integrate the two.