How to Set Up a Nest Protect Smoke & CO Alarm

Introduction

The Nest Protect is a smoke and carbon monoxide detector that tests itself automatically and lasts up to a decade. It's also the first home alarm you can hush from your phone without any extra hardware required. It can report a detected issue directly to your smartphone.
Nest Protect with green lighting
This guide will cover:

  • Downloading and installing the Nest App
  • Connecting your Nest Protect to your Nest account
  • Physically installing your Nest Protect

1 Credentials

In order to connect to a wireless network, you must have the required credentials. These are:
  • Wireless Network Name (SSID)
  • Wireless Network Key (Password)

Finding Network Credentials

Most wireless routers or gateways have a label with the default credentials. If the credentials aren't there, check the documentation that came with your device.
Default Wi-Fi credentials highlighted on router / gateway sticker.

If your Internet Service Provider (ISP) installed the wireless router or gateway, they might have left you a setup sheet which may have the credentials.

? Do you know your Wireless Network name (SSID) and Key?

  1. Yes
  2. No

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The Nest Protect is a smoke and carbon monoxide detector that tests itself automatically and lasts up to a decade. It's also the first home alarm you can hush from your phone without any extra hardware required. It can report a detected issue directly to your smartphone.
Nest Protect with green lighting
This guide will cover:

  • Downloading and installing the Nest App
  • Connecting your Nest Protect to your Nest account
  • Physically installing your Nest Protect
In order to connect to a wireless network, you must have the required credentials. These are:
  • Wireless Network Name (SSID)
  • Wireless Network Key (Password)

Finding Network Credentials

Most wireless routers or gateways have a label with the default credentials. If the credentials aren't there, check the documentation that came with your device.
Default Wi-Fi credentials highlighted on router / gateway sticker.

If your Internet Service Provider (ISP) installed the wireless router or gateway, they might have left you a setup sheet which may have the credentials.

You'll need to remove the device from the ceiling or wall before you can set it up with the app.

In order to proceed with the setup we will need the device in hand. Go ahead and remove it from the ceiling or wall.

 

Now we're going to install the Nest app. In order to do so, we need to know what kind of smartphone you have.
  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen.
    Swipe down
  2. Tap the Bluetooth icon to enable it.
    Bluetooth Enabled
    Bluetooth Enabled
    Bluetooth Disabled
    Bluetooth Disabled
  1. Launch the Play Store.
    Android Google Play store app icon.
  2. Search for Nest using the search box located at the top.
    Android Play store app displaying search results for the Nest app.
  3. Touch the magnifying glass on the on-screen keyboard to search.
    Android Play store app with search button highlighted.
  4. On the App's install page, touch INSTALL.
    Android Play store app with the install button highlighted.
  5. Review the install prompt that pops up. Once done, touch ACCEPT.
    Android Play store app with the accept button highlighted.
  6. Wait for the download to finish. Once done, touch OPEN to launch the App or go back to your apps to access the new App's icon.
    Android Play store app with the open button highlighted.

Log Into An Existing Nest Account

  1. Open your Nest App if it is not already open.
    Nest App Icon
  2. If you already have a Nest account, you can enter your account credentials and tap Sign in to proceed.
    Nest Sign in page

Create a New Nest Account

  1. If you do not have a Nest account, tap the Sign up option beneath the Sign in button to create a free Nest account.
  2. You'll need to enter your email address and choose a password.
  3. Tap Sign up.
    Nest App sign up page.
  4. Select I agree to agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, and tap Continue at the bottom of the next screen.
    Nest app terms of service with I agree selected

Log Into An Existing Nest Account

  1. Open your Nest App if it is not already open.
    Nest App Icon
  2. If you already have a Nest account, you can enter your account credentials and tap Sign in to proceed.
    Nest Sign in page

Create a New Nest Account

  1. If you do not have a Nest account, tap the Sign up option beneath the Sign in button to create a free Nest account.
  2. You'll need to enter your email address and choose a password.
  3. Tap Sign up.
    Nest App sign up page.
  4. Select I agree to agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, and tap Continue at the bottom of the next screen.
    Nest app terms of service with I agree selected
  1. Open the Nest app.
    Mobile app icon
  2. Tap the Add button to begin adding a Nest device to the app.
    Add device screen in mobile app
  3. You will then be presented with a list of Nest devices that can be added to the app. Choose your device from the list provided.
    Selection screen for device to be added to mobile app
  4. You now have the opportunity to use your smartphone's camera to scan your Nest device's QR code. Alternatively, if you cannot locate your Nest device's QR code, you can tap Continue without scanning.
    QR code scan feature for adding device in mobile app
  5. Then enter the 6 digit key that should be on your nest device.
    6-digit key entry screen
  6. Follow the on-screen instructions and select Next on the following screen.
    Nest Protect setup page
  7. Pull out the blue tab on your Nest Protect.
    Blue tab pulled out of Nest Protect
  8. The Nest Protect will say "Hi from Nest" and the light will glow blue.
    Nest Protect with glowing blue ring
  9. Choose your language by pressing the button when it asks.
  10. You will be asked to select a location for your Nest Protect. Choose a selection that applies to your setup.
    Nest Protect choose location options
  11. Your Nest Protect will scan for available Wi-Fi networks. Select your Wi-Fi network from the list.
    Wi-Fi network selection screen
  12. Enter your Wi-Fi network's password and select Join.
    Wi-Fi password entry screen
  13. Your Nest device will attempt to connect. This process may take a few moments.
    Nest Protect connecting to network
  14. Once connected, your Nest Protect will turn green.
    Nest Protect with green lighting
  15. Choose the setting for your path lighting. You can dim it as you wish or turn it off entirely.
    Nest Protect Pathlighting 
  16. Once finished, the app will ask if you want to add another Nest Protect. If you have another Nest Protect, it will walk you through a faster version of the setup.
    Nest Protect add another protect image
  17. Next, we'll physically install your Nest Protect but we need to know whether you intend to install it with batteries or with the wired connectors.
  1. Remove your old smoke alarm.
    Smoke alarm being removed
  2. Remove the old backplate.
    Removing old backplate
  3. Screw the Nest backplate to the existing electrical box, reusing the existing screws. You can also screw the backplate directly into the wall or ceiling with the Nest screws.
    Backplate of Nest Protect
  4. Line up the three tabs on the back of your Nest Protect with the notches on the backplate. Hold Nest Protect against the backplate and turn it clockwise. Continue turning until it's square with the wall or ceiling.
    Nest Protect being screwed in
  5. Test your Nest Protect by pushing the Nest button twice. It will check its sensors, power, Wi-Fi connection, emergency horn, speaker, and lights.
    Nest Protect with arrow pointing to the button
  6. If you have more than one Nest Protect, they should all sound off at the same time and show they are connected.

If you're uncomfortable working with high voltage wiring we recommend you use Nest's list of contractors to find a professional.

  1. Turn off the power.
    A breaker box showing the power off to a specific area
  2. Wait until the current smoke detector's light goes out to make sure you've turned off the correct circuit breaker.
    A smoke detector with the power light off
  3. Remove your old smoke alarm.
    Smoke alarm being removed
  4. Remove the old backplate.
    Smoke alarm backplate removal
  5. Remove the old alarm connector.
    Removing the smoke alarm connectors
  6. Wipe away any dust or particles away from the mounting area.
  7. If you have a red / orange / yellow wire go ahead and cap it off with a wire nut. We won't be using that.
    Red wire in a wire nut.
  8. Hold the white wire ends together, cap them with a wire nut and twist clockwise until it's secure. Do the same with the black wires.
    Black and white wires being capped
  9. Screw the Nest backplate to the existing electrical box, reusing the existing screws. You can also screw the backplate directly into the wall or ceiling with the Nest screws.
    Nest protect backplate screwed in
  10. Plug the 120V connector into the back of your Nest Protect.
    Nest Protect being plugged in
  11. First, tuck any excess wiring into the electrical box. Line up the three tabs on the back of your Nest Protect with the notches on the backplate. Hold Nest Protect against the backplate and turn it clockwise. Continue turning until it's square with the wall or ceiling.
    Nest Protect being screwed in
  12. Switch the power back on.
    Circuit breaker
  13. Test your Nest Protect by pushing the Nest button twice. It will check its sensors, power, Wi-Fi connection, emergency horn, speaker, and lights.
    Nest Protect with arrow pointing to the button
  14. If you have more than one Nest Protect, they should all sound off at the same time and show they are connected.
  1. Open Settings.
    iOS Settings.
  2. Select Bluetooth.
    iOS Bluetooth
  3. Ensure that the Bluetooth toggle is in the On position.
    Bluetooth toggle switch highlighted in iOS settings.
  1. Open the App Store.
    iOS App Store icon.
  2. Search Nest in the Search Bar.
    iOS App Store with search results for the Nest app.
  3. Tap Get and download the app.
  4. Once downloaded, open the app.
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