How to Wire a Dial Thermostat

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Most people use digital programmable thermostats for their home heating and air conditioning systems. Programmable thermostats run on a program that automatically turns the temperature setting up and down in your home depending on how you set it. However, some people still prefer the simplicity of the analog dial thermostat. The benefits of these thermostats are that they are easy to set and don't require reading an entire instruction manual. It is also fairly easy to wire a dial thermostat to your home heating and air conditioning system.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Drywall anchors
  • Screws
  • Cordless drill
  • Wire stripper
  • Turn off power to your home heating and air conditioning system by turning off the correct circuit breaker in the circuit breaker panel.

  • Remove the old thermostat from the wall and disconnect the wiring. The wires are usually held on by screws. Label all wires as you remove them so they can be reconnected to the correct terminals on the dial thermostat.

  • Unscrew the wall plate from the wall and remove it. Install the new wall plate with drywall anchors and screws.

  • Check the thermostat wires to ensure they are stripped sufficiently. There should be 1/4 inch of bare copper exposed on each wire. If there isn't, strip them with your wire stripper.

  • Connect each wire to the new thermostat. A typical configuration of a dial thermostat has the red wire connecting to the "R" terminal, the white wire connecting to the "W" terminal, the green wire connecting to the "G" terminal, and the yellow wire connecting to the "Y" terminal.

  • Push the thermostat on to the wall plate until it snaps into place. Turn the power back on to the heating and air conditioning system.

  • Set the dial on the thermostat to the temperature you prefer. The heating and air conditioning system will maintain that temperature.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure the power is off to the heating and air conditioning system when wiring the dial thermostat. Failure to do so could result in damage to the control board on the furnace.

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References

  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
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