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How Long Does Nest Thermostat Battery Last? Battery Life Details!

Last Updated Jun 15, 2022
four yellow batteries on a black background
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Google’s Nest thermostats are certainly some of the most popular smart home devices on the market. Users have reported that they love the reasonable price point, the eco-friendly and energy-saving capabilities, and especially the fact that it is so easy to install and user-friendly. Although the thermostat pretty much thinks for itself, it does need some human intervention, and changing the batteries will be your responsibility, so just how long will the Nest thermostat battery last?

The Nest thermostat technically receives its power through the HVAC system already wired into your home. However, it also comes with two AAA alkaline batteries that work as the backup energy source if the system isn’t providing enough power. These AAA batteries will typically last about a year or maybe even two before they need replacing. 

While most of us have some AAA batteries laying in a junk drawer somewhere, there are a few things you need to know about which type of batteries are best for your Nest, and how to change them. There are also a few troubleshooting solutions we want to provide in case the battery life on your Nest doesn’t seem to be working as it should, i.e. if you are constantly receiving a “low battery” alert. Essentially, we have everything you need to know about your Nest thermostat’s battery life! 

What Type of Batteries Does the Nest Thermostat Use?

Now you know that if your Nest thermostat is working properly, the AAA batteries that come included with your purchase should last between one and two years. So what do you need to do when that time is up? 

Most importantly, it’s important to understand that not all batteries are made the same. Google recommends that you only use 1.5 V AAA alkaline batteries from a known manufacturer. If you do use an off-brand pack, they won’t necessarily affect the thermostat, but they probably won’t last nearly as long. 

NOTE: If you have noticed that your Nest thermostat does not take AAA batteries, and instead uses a lithium chargeable battery and are feeling a little confused, you aren’t the only one! Only the thermostat with the exact name “Nest Thermostat” uses AAA batteries. The Nest Learning thermostats and the Nest thermostat E use lithium, so make sure you check the precise name of your device! 

How to Change the Batteries on a Nest Thermostat

When your batteries are dying, the Nest will alert you with a “low battery” message on the display or on the Google Home app. The good news is, changing them is ridiculously simple, in fact, it’s very similar to changing the batteries on your television’s remote control. Here are the step-by-step directions from Google:

  • Take the thermostat off the display base. 
  • Remove the dead batteries.
  • Replace them with two new AAA alkaline batteries.
  • Click the thermostat back into the display base. 

Of course, it’s essential that you put the batteries in the correct positioning and that the batteries are new and functioning, but that’s all there is to it! 

Troubleshooting Battery Problems With the Nest Thermostat

There is a chance that the Nest thermostat is malfunctioning if you have received the “low battery” alert either during the initial set up, long before the estimated time frame, or if you are continually encountering a “low battery” message when you have recently changed the batteries. And usually, it’s not your fault!

If you have fresh batteries that are placed correctly into the thermostat, it’s most likely your HVAC power source that is having the problem, not the batteries themselves. However, you will still see that “low battery” light because the power source is technically charging the batteries, so it they aren’t getting enough energy, neither is your thermostat., 

Unfortunately, fixing a problem with your C wire (the common wire that most likely is powering your thermostat through the HVAC system, is a little more technical than simply changing AAA batteries. Although the Google support page can step you through it, you may want an electrician for this one. 

Final Thoughts 

To recap. the batteries in a Nest thermostat are just standard AAA batteries, but because they are only being used as the back up power for the system, they should last a fairly long time, about 12-24 months. 

A fun feature of the battery and HVAC system powering your thermostat is that if the power goes our, you should have at least two hours of battery life so you can continue to heat and cool your home to the temperature of your choice! 

We hope you now understand a little more about the battery life of a Nest thermostat, as well as how to change the batteries when needed, and what to do if you can’t get rid of that pesky “low battery” message!

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