The official start of summer is just days away and it is bound to get hot and humid. You may hear us use the terms dew point, relative humidity, or feels like temperature throughout the summer, but what's the difference?
Dew Point is the quantity of moisture in the air. The higher the dew point, the more moisture in the air. This is the most direct way of measuring humidity.
Relative Humidity is shown in a percentage. It measures how close the air is to saturation. Just because there is a high relative humidity does not mean it will feel muggy outside.
Feels like temperature is how the outside air feels to the human body when you combine air temperature and relative humidity. This is also known as heat index. When heat index values get too high it can become very dangerous for you to be outside.
How muggy it feels outside is determined by what the relative humidity and the dew point is. The worst situation is when there is a high dew point and high relative humidity.
The best time to head outdoors is when the relative humidity is between 50-70% and the dew point is around 60F.
When you see dew points climbing above 65F, then you know that's a day to take heat precautions. Drink plenty of water and take breaks indoors. For more on heat safety, click here.
The First Alert Weather Team makes it easy for you to stay up to date with the latest forecast:
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