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Why Does My Nest Thermostat Say in 2 Hours? (And if it Continues)

Last Updated Jun 6, 2022
a nest thermostat at 63 degrees
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Nest Thermostats are an innovative product that lets you control the temperature in your home from anywhere. But, there is something strange happening to some Nest thermostats lately. They will say “in 2 hours” when you want to change the settings instantly. What gives? Is your thermostat damaged? How can you fix it?

When a Nest thermostat says “in 2 hours”, it means that it’s delayed for cooling your home. This could be caused by several factors but often happens when the thermostat doesn’t have a C-Wire and gets underpowered. When this happens, it could delay the startup. The only solution is to fix the root of the problem.

If you’ve been experiencing this error, this blog post is for you. We’ll go over the most common reasons for this error and guide you on fixing it if you keep experiencing the same problem. So, let’s get this show on the road. Shall we?

Why Does My Nest Thermostat Say Delayed for 2 Hours?

If your Nest thermostat says “Delayed for” or shows a number, it means that it is delayed in making the home cooler. When this happens, if you don’t have a lot of experience with this device, you may be quick to think that your Nest thermostat is broken or malfunctioning. However, this isn’t the case at all!

There are a few reasons your Nest may be experiencing and showing a “Delayed for” message on its screen. These include:

It’s Been Recently Installed

When you’ve learnt something new, it takes some time to get used to it. The same principle applies here: you and your Nest thermostat need time to learn each other’s ways and habits, especially if this is the first time a Nest has been installed in your home!

The thermostat will take some time to learn and adapt to your schedule. Therefore, when it says, “in 2 hours”, it’s because it’s yet to learn all the information it needs to give you an exact estimate.

Therefore, if you’ve recently installed your Nest thermostat, it may take some time before the display changes to show you an exact estimate rather than a range.

But what do I do if it says “in two hours” but then continues showing that message? If this happens on your thermostat, there are other reasons why your Nest is taking longer to learn about your schedule, like:

Recent System Reboot

Another reason for the display to show “in two hours” is because your system has recently been rebooted. If you reboot (or turn off and on) your heating or cooling, the Nest thermostat can take some time to learn about this schedule change. In fact, you should expect this delay to happen every time you reboot your system.

The Circuit Isn’t Completed

If you’ve not recently installed your thermostat or rebooted it, there’s a great chance that the issue is related to the wiring of your system. You see, unlike traditional thermostats, the Nest isn’t battery-powered. Instead, it requires access to the furnace to get adequate power. Consequently, this thermostat requires an additional wire that most people forget to use.

To check whether or not the circuit is complete:

  1. Go to your Nest, and scroll to settings.
  2. Click on equipment under “settings.”
  3. If the thermostat is wired correctly, you should see a little tab next to the Y1 for your cooling system.
  • G for the fan
  • W1 for the heat
  • RH for the power 
  • C for common
  1. If the circuit is not complete, there will be a tab for G, W1, and RH but none for C. This indicates that you don’t have the wire required to complete the circuit.

Source: Robot Powered Home

How to Fix the “2 Hour” Error

The solution will depend on what’s causing the problem. For instance, if you’ve recently installed the Nest thermostat or rebooted the system, the only solution is to wait it out. The error should disappear once the thermostat has been on for a few hours and adjusted to the changes.

However, if the error occurs due to an incomplete circuit, you’ll have to complete it to fix the problem. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Turn off the power supply to the furnace. 
  • Check for an extra wire in the Nest. It should be blue.  
  • Grab a flashlight, a regular standard and Phillips screwdriver, a respirator, and 6-in-1. 
  • Go to the furnace and ensure it’s unplugged. Remove the cover. The wires may be in the lower system. You may need to use the 6-in-1 to remove the cover of this back portion. 
  • Locate the wire that goes to your thermostat. This large black wire will have multiple wires in it, whereas the AC will only have two. 
  • Find the blue wire inside the thermostat wire and attach it to the plug that says “C” or “Comm” for “Common.” Close the furnace, but leave it unplugged. 
  • Go to the Nest and plug the blue wire into the “C.” 
  • Lastly, plug the furnace back in and test it out to see if it works correctly. 

Source: Decor Tweaks

Wrapping Up

If you’ve been getting the “2-hour delay” on your thermostat, it could be because you recently installed it or rebooted it, or there could be an incomplete circuit. Use the above instructions to get it back on track.

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