How To Unlock A Honeywell Thermostat (Step-by-Step Guide)

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart
Honeywell manufactures some of the best thermostats on the market, but they are useless until you unlock them. You can unlock a Honeywell thermostat if you enter the menu and enter your unit’s key code. Each unit varies, so let’s explore what you can do to unlock your specific Honeywell thermostat.

Thermostats are amazing artifacts of modern engineering. Think about it. They come with temperature sensing equipment that helps regulate the warmth of your home in a pinch. They also come with indicators for battery life, special eco-friendly modes, as well as less cool features, like locking. A locked thermostat is annoying, but how do you unlock it

To unlock a touchscreen Honeywell thermostat, it’s best to follow the instructions in your owner’s manual. The most common unlocking procedure involves going to the lock screen, pressing in the proper key code, and press “SELECT.” If you entered the right passcode, your thermostat will be unlocked.

Trying to unlock your thermostat can prove to be a pain, particularly if you don’t know what the default unlock code is. However, this is a relatively quick fix. This guide will help you understand the basics regarding your thermostat’s locking function.

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Why Do Thermostats Have Lock Functions?

The “lock” function is a relatively new invention on thermostats, even those from a company like Honeywell. The reason they were invented was simple: no one wants to have someone messing with the thermostat. Rather than have to continually reset your thermostat to your optimal temperature, you can choose to just lock it so your kids won’t access it.

Are Lock Functions Available On All Honeywell Models?

If you don’t like the idea of a lock function on your thermostat, you’re not alone. The good news is that you don’t have to buy a Honeywell thermostat with a lock function. There are plenty of thermostats under the Honeywell brand that do not have a lock function whatsoever. If you don’t have kids, getting a lock-free thermostat is highly advisable.

With that said, all wi-fi compatible Honeywell thermostats have a lock feature. So if you don’t want to keep your screen locked, just unlock it and keep it unlocked.

When Does It Make Sense To Lock Your Thermostat?

Choosing to lock your thermostat is usually a situational thing. If any of the following ring true, you should lock your thermostat:

  • You own a building that is being used by multiple clients and are legally allowed to mandate the temperature. If you own an office, then you might want to consider keeping it locked as a way to cut down on costs. The same can be said about thermostats that are being used in common areas of apartments.
  • You have kids who love to mess with the thermostat. Trust me, I know this pain well. I was a kid who wanted to play “super-spy” by unlocking a secret code on a safe that was actually just a thermostat on the wall.
  • You have an Airbnb. Most states will allow you to lock thermostats in an Airbnb. I don’t think anyone would blame you for making the change as a way to trim costs.

How To Find Unlocking Instructions For Your Honeywell Thermostat

Truth be told, most Honeywell models that have a lock function also have specific instructions on how to unlock them. The easiest way to find out how to unlock your specific model is to look up the owner’s manual for the specific type of thermostat you have. If you aren’t sure what your thermostat’s model number is, look at the thermostat’s ID plate at the back of the thermostat.

If your owner’s manual gives you different instructions than the ones I mentioned here, just follow the instructions in the manual instead of the ones here. Your manual’s guidance trumps any other guidance that you might have.

Can You Change Your Thermostat’s Passcode?

Here’s the weird thing about a lot of Honeywell’s lockable thermostats: you can’t actually change the passcode that is set as the default. So while you can have a passcode lock your screen, virtually anyone who knows what the default setting is will be able to change the temperature regardless of your intentions.

Why Can’t You Change Your Thermostat’s Passcode?

Honestly, we don’t know. Some people have suggested that this was Honeywell’s way of ensuring that you can switch homeowners without locking the new homeowner out of their thermostat. Others have suggested that it was easier to program this way, or that it was a way to foolproof a thermostat’s setup.

If you really need to have a thermostat that you can program, then you might need to go shopping for a thermostat sooner rather than later. Sadly you can’t really do anything about the thermostat’s engineering aside from choosing one that’s more compatible with your needs.

How To Unlock Your Honeywell Thermostat

If you are ready to unlock your thermostat, there’s some good news here. You will be able to unlock your thermostat pretty quickly without any tools. Here’s how to do it:

  • Press MENU on the thermostat, and go to LOCK. You can use the +/- signs to navigate this in most cases, though some may have a different way to access the lock screen.
  • Select “OFF” if it prompts you to choose a new lock setting. You will want to go to off. Some other models may ask if you want to unlock your thermostat.
  • Press the center button and hold to unlock the keypad. This will allow you to enter the key code to turn off your lock.
  • Enter your keypad code. With most Honeywell models, the default keypad code is “1234.” You can punch this in by scrolling through the available numbers using the +/- buttons. Your specific code may vary depending on the model. If “1234” doesn’t work, then refer to your owner’s manual to find out what’s the proper default.
  • Press “SELECT” to finalize your code. This will send the code to the thermostat and hopefully unlock your thermostat.
  • If your keycode was correct, your thermostat will be unlocked. If it was incorrect, you’ll see “–” blink on the screen, followed by a prompt for another code. Should you get an incorrect reading, you should call Honeywell’s customer service line to see if there’s something else you need to know or if you need another passcode.

Should You Keep Your Thermostat Unlocked At All Times?

While this is basically up to your own personal preferences, the truth is that most people don’t need their thermostat to be locked most of the time. Most people don’t go out of their way to turn up a thermostat or switch it around. If you have a home with a bunch of adults that can listen to rules, there won’t be a reason to keep your thermostat locked.

What Do Each Of The Lock Settings On A Honeywell Thermostat Mean?

If you took a look at the screen, you probably noticed that most Honeywell thermostats have not two, but three lock settings. Here’s a run-through of what each setting does:

  • ON. This turns on all the features of a screen lock, which means that your thermostat is only changeable if you unlock it.
  • OFF. As the name suggests, this turns off all the features that come with the screen lock function. If your lock is set to “OFF,” then anyone can change any setting that comes with the thermostat.
  • PARTIAL. Do you need to have just some of your thermostat’s features locked? If so, then choose this option. This gives users just a little leeway to change some settings but won’t give them free reign of the thermostat.

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Related Questions

Could a low battery affect the way my thermostat is acting?

If your lock button has been acting up, then you might want to take a look at the low battery indicator that your thermostat has. A thermostat that is low on “juice” may start to act up in various ways. This can include having a finicky locking mechanism or just having your thermostat refuse to increase the temperature past a certain point.Should you have a thermostat that’s acting up, try to replace the batteries to see if that helps. If it doesn’t and you can’t find a fix online, call up Honeywell’s support team. They’re great at troubleshooting troublesome thermostats.

What type of Honeywell thermostat do I have?

If you don’t know what type of thermostat you have, your best bet is to check the thermostat ID card that is included in your thermostat’s package. If you don’t have the card on hand, then you can check the model number by looking at the ID plate on the back of your thermostat. Once you have gotten the model number, you can search up your model number online and get the full details on your model.

How can I tell if my Honeywell thermostat is working?

A working thermostat will have a lit LED screen and will change the temperature of your room according to the commands you send it. If you see no sign of lights, no sign of electricity running through the thermostat, or just don’t feel your temperature changing then you probably have a malfunctioning thermostat. Make sure power is running to it, and then run a troubleshoot to fix it.

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Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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