Want to add a WIFI thermostat, but no 'C' wire… only 2 wires to each thermo

(Last Updated On: November 18, 2017)

Traditional, non-smart thermostats act as a switch that turn your heat or air-conditioning on or off. It doesn’t need a steady power source. Today’s connected thermostats, on the other hand, need electricity to power the unit’s backlit display and other functions and features.

A C-wire, put simply, supplies constant power to your connected thermostat. If you want a smart thermostat but do not have a C-wire to power it, then you can run a new thermostat wire from your thermostat to your furnace.

However, this can take a lot of work, depending on the distance between the two. If you don’t want that, you can buy an adapter that allows you to add a C-wire to your thermostat. This option, however, is only ideal for those smart thermostats that already have a four-wire 24VAC layout and lack only a C-wire.

Plus, installation can be a tad too daunting, especially for people who do not know how to open their furnaces.

You can...

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This guide answers these questions. How to install a thermostat? What tools do I need to install a thermostat? What do each thermostat wire? What is a C wire? Do I need a C wire? Do I have a hidden C wire? What are C wire alternatives? How not to fry your thermostat wires or transformer while Installing your thermostat? How to avoid short circuiting your thermostat?

Thermostat replacement could be very easy if your old thermostat was set up right. But if your old thermostat cables and the system is complicated it could be a real pain. If you are not careful you might fry your new smart thermostat.

Here is a step by step instructions how to replace your old thermostat with your new smart thermostat. Please pay attention, read the whole thing once before you start your replacement.

Before you Install your smart wifi thermostat

Make sure you check our “What kind of Heating and Cooling system do I have?” article first. You have to know the type of...

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Our friends at Android Central recently took a deeper look at Google's Nest, so we thought we'd do the same thing with the ecobee4, which as thermostats go, might be even smarter. And we're starting with a hands-on install!

Step 1: Disconnecting the dumb

Right from the start, Ecobee did a good job with the instructions. They made the process seem simple, which took a lot of the stress out of something that could otherwise seem like a major change to your home.

First, we went into the garage to power off the HVAC system (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning). A couple of switches later, and we were ready to go. That meant taking the cover off the old thermostat.

The next step was the most daunting: We had to label all the wires. Ecobee provided stickers to make it easier, but it was slow going just because none of us had ever done anything like that before. For example, there was a warning about high voltage systems, which we didn't really...

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OK, I'll help you out here. First, turn off the furnace electrical supply or you can easily short out your thermostat.The RC & RH just means Red for heat and Red for cool. There's usually a little jumper wire between the 2 since most people have A/C and Heat in one system. The W is for running the heating system in your home weather gas or electric ( if it's electric, there's a little dip switch on the back of the thermostat that has to be switched or it won't work right if at all) or look at the directions. This controls the heat when the thermo (thermostat) calls for heat. The G is for the Unit's blower motor or if you want your unit to run with or w/o using heat/cool. Otherwise it's like turning on a fan( this is what the auto/on switch on the thermo is for). The Y is for your outside A/C unit. It controls when the thermo calls for cool. You'll have to check to see if your blue wire does go to the outside A/C unit, just follow it from the furnace and see if it's tapped...

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Hi All, I'm looking for advice on the best options for openHab 1.x compatible wifi thermostats to suit my needs.

I don't need a "learning" thermostat that learns your routines, as I'd want openHab and manual users to have full control. Presence detection is also unnecessary, as A) openHab already does that for me based my phone location (and network health as a backup), and B) my dog is home during the day, which would potentially give a false positive for human presence (unless it only detects human-height motion).

I'd also rather not have to go through a third party cloud server for it to function. It's just an additional point of failure that I don't want or need.

Unfortunately, it seems that all the big players require a cloud connection to function. Nest sounds like it might be one solution (if the learning features can be disabled), now that I've read you can bypass the cloud with a developers account. Is that feature available in older versions of...

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Diagnose & fix a room thermostat that that won't turn the heating or cooling system ON when it should - room thermostat troubleshooting:

here we explain how to diagnose and fix hermostat wiring problems that cause a heating system or cooling system to stay OFF when it should turn on.

We provide a sequence of diagnostic steps that determine if the problem is at the thermostat, the thermostat wiring, or at other heating or cooling system controls. We include some simple VOM tests or DMM tests to check for a broken or "open" thermostat wire and tests to check for thermostat wires that are shorted together.

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Thermostat Troubleshooting: heating or cooling system won't turn ON - Step 1

Here we discuss how to diagnose &...

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Step 2

Power off the heating, ventilation and air conditioner system before starting with your installation. Do this by turning off the master switch on your circuit box. This box is usually found in your basement, attic, closet, or garage.

Step 3

Ensure your system is shut off by turning on your air and feeling your vents for any air movement. You should not feel anything.

Step 4

Remove the old thermostat cover from the wall. You shouldn’t need any tools for this. It should just need to be popped off or unclipped from the base.

Warning: If your thermostat’s back plate has a lot of indicators that say L1 L2, warning high voltage, or 110 VAC, 120 VAC or 240 VAC, then sadly you will not be compatible for this.

Step 5

Quickly, snap a picture of the wires that are located on the back of your old thermostat. You will need this for future reference.

Step 6

Since we already established you do not have a C-wire, you...

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Heck, now I’m not calling anyone a dummy! Even the most seasoned people who enjoy DIY may come across problems with wiring a thermostat. The main trouble is dealing with those different colored wires, knowing which one does what and if that wasn’t enough, you also have numbers and letters to deal with.

One of the biggest complaints, or rather, reasons for confusion I have come across is down to the fact that many thermostats on the market don’t work if your system isn’t equipped with a ‘C’ (common) wire. I will explain that in a little more detail further down this page.

Wiring Set-Up Explained

What I would like you to know is the information detailed below is based on the industry standard, yet not all thermostats will work this way simply because letters and numbers are used as well as color. Plus, I’m anything but a technician so what I have detailed below is here purely as a guideline.

So, this is what you might expect to see in terms of colored...

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When in the market for a new Honeywell thermostat, make sure you understand your Honeywell thermostat wiring needs before upgrading.

Q: I installed my new programmable thermostat, but it won’t turn on.

A: If you plan to upgrade to a new thermostat make sure you have the proper number of wires available, otherwise your new thermostat won’t work. If you do need additional wires, you will want to consider how difficult installing new wires will be for your application, and if you need to budget for an electrician or hvac tech to install the proper wiring.

SEE ALSO: In-Depth Thermostat Wiring Explained
SEE ALSO: Heat Pump Thermostat Wiring
SEE ALSO: Manufacturer Thermostat Installation Manuals – manuals online or manualslib

NOTE: This article provides the basics of what to expect and look for when wiring a new or existing thermostat. With the many brands and models of thermostats existing, along with the numerous issues that could arise with...

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In this article, I am going to explain the function and wiring of the most common home climate control thermostats. This information is designed to help you understand the function of the thermostat to assist you when installing a new one, or replacing or up-grading an old one. We will focus mainly on the basics of home heating / cooling thermostats, and first of all, I will explain the function of them.

The thermostat is the control device that provides a simple user interface with the internal workings of your homes climate control system. By the use of an adjustable set-point, the job of the thermostat is to turn on either the heating or cooling system to maintain the desired room temperature in the home, and to turn off the system when the desired temperature is achieved.

The most basic of systems (such as an older ‘heat only’ forced air / gas furnace with a standing pilot light) only need two wires for control. They connect to a two-wire thermostat (generally a...

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