Skip to main content

Google will replace some Nest thermostats after ‘w5’ wi-fi issue breaks remote control

Google’s Nest thermostats make it easy to control the temperature of your home remotely, but that all relies on a wireless connection. Over the past few months, some Nest owners have encountered a “w5” error with wi-fi which cuts off all remote connections.

The error, which has been popping up since November on ongoing forum threads, won’t pull the plug on actual control over your thermostat, but just the ability to control it from a smartphone or smart speaker. While it’s nice to know this issue won’t entirely wreck your A/C, it does essentially break the biggest selling point of the product.

For some users, this problem can be fixed through a standard reset or other troubleshooting measures. For others, the known hardware with the internal Wi-Fi chip requires a full hardware replacement — which Google will provide for free after a customer contacts support. Google explained to The Verge:

A very small number of Nest thermostat users are experiencing a known issue with the Wi-Fi chip that causes remote connectivity issues. This does not affect the thermostat’s ability to control the customer’s heating and cooling system in the home, but does impact the user’s ability to manage the thermostat remotely. If a user sees this error and it can’t be resolved through troubleshooting, they are prompted to contact customer support for assistance and will be issued a replacement device.

Reports of this issue have come up most in recent weeks than previously, suggesting that a recent Nest update could have caused the “w5” error for more users. Android Police noted some cases where the issue appeared “immediately” after an update.

If you’re having this issue, get in touch will Google support and also leave a comment below letting us know whether a reset fixes the issue, or if you end up getting a replacement.

More on Nest:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel



Avatar for Ben Schoon Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

Find him on Twitter @NexusBen. Send tips to or encrypted to

Ben Schoon's favorite gear