As of last fall, Google’s support forums have been lit up with complaints about Nest thermostats refusing to connect to Wi-Fi. Although you can still adjust the knob on a Nest thermostat that suffers from the troublesome “w5” error, you can not control it remotely from the Nest app or via Google Assistant. That’s a problem.
Google has been vague about the cause of the error and noted in a statement to The Verge that a “known problem with the Wi-Fi chip”; on a “very small number” of Nest thermostats may be to blame.
In any case, Google recommends two possible fixes for the “w5” Nest thermostat error. If they do not work, there is also a last resort: request a free replacement.
Reset your Nest thermostat
If your Nest thermostat does not connect to your Wi-Fi network and is running software version 6.0 or later, a simple reset can do the trick.
- First, reset your Nest thermostat’s network settings by navigating to Settings> Reset> Network.
- Then restart the Nest thermostat by selecting Settings> Reset> Restart.
- When the thermostat is on again, try to connect to your Wi-Fi network by navigating to Settings> Network.
Update your Nest thermostat system software
Another possible way to clear the “w5” error is to update your Nest thermostat software to the latest version.
- If you see the “w5” error indicator on your Nest thermostat display and an exclamation point on the Settings icon, select Settings> Software> Update.
- If a new update is available, it should go ahead and install itself. When it does, go to Settings> Network and see if you can reconnect to your Wi-Fi network.
- Did you get a “Can’t check if there is a software update” instead? Select Connect, you can try – crossed fingers – to manually connect to your Wi-Fi network.
Get a free replacement
Still not working? In that case, it may be time to throw in the towel and ask for compensation. Just visit the Google Nest support page, select your country and start an online chat. Having to replace your Nest thermostat hardware can be annoying, but at least it’s free and you can hopefully leave the “w5” error behind.