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Which Kind Of Heat Is Worse?

115 degrees, low humidity (Phoenix, Las Vegas, etc.)
- 4 (8.7%)
100 degrees, moderate humidity (Dallas, San Antonio, etc.)
- 3 (6.5%)
90 degrees, high humidity (Houston, Miami, etc.)
- 28 (60.9%)
All are equally bad.
- 11 (23.9%)

Total Members Voted: 46


Author Topic: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?  (Read 6137 times)

CoreySamson

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What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« on: June 28, 2021, 10:26:39 PM »

With the heatwave hitting the northwest this week, I've been thinking about heat in the summertime. More specifically, how everyone all over the US says their heat is the worst (I have a family member who insists Memphis has worse summers than Houston!). I personally think humidity is what makes or breaks heat, but that's just my opinion. What type of heat do y'all think is the worst?

LilianaUwU

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2021, 10:35:54 PM »

I gotta say that humidity makes it worse, but having only experienced 90 degree temps with high humidity, I can't tell if the top two options are worse. Still, I would probably hate the other two options just as much.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2021, 11:29:20 PM »

Orlando in the summer, especially after it rains.  That range of temperature usually ranges from 80-90F but the air gets super humid and stagnant being inland.

110F and humid after a monsoon in Phoenix was no joke either but would only wouldn’t last more than a day. 
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Roadgeekteen

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2021, 01:11:39 AM »

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.
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US 89

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2021, 01:32:12 AM »

The hottest temperature I have ever personally experienced was 107 degrees in Salt Lake City a couple weeks ago. Dew points were down in the 30s, so humidity was not a factor. Highest heat index I've ever experienced was one summer visiting my grandma in northeast Oklahoma. Temperatures were around 100 degrees, but dew points were high enough to result in heat index values around 115.

Personally, I don't think humidity makes all that much of a difference when it starts getting above 100. It seems to me that the real impact of humidity comes when the dry-bulb temperature is in the 80s and 90s. In fact, most of what I remember from that Oklahoma heat wave was how oppressive the nights were. It was impossible to be outside in any sort of comfort at any time of day or night unless you were in a pool. Obviously being outside in the afternoons was brutal, but to be honest I don't think it really felt much worse then than it did in the morning.

The feel of that dry 107, on the other hand, is probably best compared to being baked in an oven. Especially when a breeze came up. At those temperatures there is zero cooling effect with any sort of wind and you just feel like you're being roasted alive. I would take the humid 100 over that any day.

At least if it's humid, you sweat enough to know you're losing water. With a dry enough heat, your sweat evaporates fast enough you may not realize how dehydrated you are until it's too late.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2021, 01:36:25 AM by US 89 »
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Roadgeekteen

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2021, 01:33:28 AM »

I've noticed that extreme temperatures have become more common lately.
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Scott5114

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2021, 03:58:52 AM »

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.

I've experienced low 110s one summer here in Oklahoma. It was noticeably hotter than the typical 100s, but it didn't feel worse, probably because getting a high RH at that sort of temperature just requires so much moisture than is available with that type of weather pattern.
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Bruce

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2021, 04:15:16 AM »

Our heat is the worst because residential ACs are uncommon and often broken. Our homes are not made to combat heat at all, and our infrastructure can barely keep up.

Scott5114

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2021, 05:13:10 AM »

Our heat is the worst because residential ACs are uncommon and often broken. Our homes are not made to combat heat at all, and our infrastructure can barely keep up.

Sounds kind of like the inverse of the Texas ice storm disaster this past winter.
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Rothman

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2021, 05:34:00 AM »

My wife experienced 110+° heat at night in Jordan in a home without A/C.  High humidity.  She said she felt like she was being cooked in bed.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2021, 05:34:20 AM »

When the temperature and humidity match. Was like that in St. Louis and it's like that here on the cape. My AC is broken (I've asked my landlord if he could fix it. Haven't heard back from him.)
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Rothman

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2021, 05:38:09 AM »

When the temperature and humidity match. Was like that in St. Louis and it's like that here on the cape. My AC is broken (I've asked my landlord if he could fix it. Haven't heard back from him.)
Heh.  My father was on Corpus Christi when the humidity was extremely high. Walked outside and his shirt got damp and stuck to him.  Humidity gets high (with high heat) in MA, but not that like that. :D
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2021, 05:45:27 AM »

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.

Yes, as a regular thing in Phoenix for 13 years.  It’s regularly over 100 even where I live now.  You kind of get used to the weather after awhile if you expose yourself to it. 
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Scott5114

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2021, 06:20:10 AM »

When the temperature and humidity match. Was like that in St. Louis and it's like that here on the cape. My AC is broken (I've asked my landlord if he could fix it. Haven't heard back from him.)
Heh.  My father was on Corpus Christi when the humidity was extremely high. Walked outside and his shirt got damp and stuck to him.  Humidity gets high (with high heat) in MA, but not that like that. :D

Humidity is a summer constant here, but incomparable to when I went down to Corpus Christi and rolled down the window at a drive-thru. It felt like there was a dryer vent attached to the window. I remember remarking to my wife, "You know all the humidity we get at home? Here's where they make it all."

As an aside, it's close to impossible for the RH and temperature to match too much above 80° or so. Air that warm can absorb a colossal amount of water vapor, so even the most humid days at 100°F are nowhere near 100% RH.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2021, 06:22:28 AM by Scott5114 »
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2021, 09:07:00 AM »

High humidity and high heat in south Florida the day or two prior to the arrival of a hurricane.  Nothing beats it for oppressiveness.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #15 on: June 29, 2021, 09:10:11 AM »

When the temperature and humidity match. Was like that in St. Louis and it's like that here on the cape. My AC is broken (I've asked my landlord if he could fix it. Haven't heard back from him.)
Heh.  My father was on Corpus Christi when the humidity was extremely high. Walked outside and his shirt got damp and stuck to him.  Humidity gets high (with high heat) in MA, but not that like that. :D

I lived near the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. When one or both were in flood, you could feel the very high humidity. Plus factor in the corn/other crops and that added more.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2021, 10:02:42 AM »

Our heat is the worst because residential ACs are uncommon and often broken. Our homes are not made to combat heat at all, and our infrastructure can barely keep up.

I lived briefly in Seattle and I moved right around the 4th of July and the temp was 98°.  I lived in an apartment that surrounded a central courtyard and I had a corner unit, so we had absolutely no breeze if we opened the windows.  Obviously no A/C either.  I had to take cold showers right before bed just to be able to sleep.



Having lived in climates with all three options, the worst by far is the high humidity.  A 95° day in Kansas City where the air is so thick you can chew it sucks.  When Denver hits 105° very, very occasionally, it doesn't feel that bad in the shade.

It's similar for cold.  I went hiking at -15° this winter out here and it was brisk but not horrible.  I was in New Orleans when it got down to 50° and that cold shot straight into my soul.

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #17 on: June 29, 2021, 01:19:18 PM »

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.

Yes, as a regular thing in Phoenix for 13 years.  It’s regularly over 100 even where I live now.  You kind of get used to the weather after awhile if you expose yourself to it.
At least in Arizona everything has AC.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #18 on: June 29, 2021, 08:26:50 PM »

Humidity no contest. The mugginess is inescapable while outside. The air feels like sticky soup. The hundreds range can at least be partially avoided in the shade, and fans actually help somewhat.

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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #19 on: June 29, 2021, 08:31:26 PM »

Have any of us actually experienced 115 degree weather, and if you have, what is it like? I haven't experienced much over 100.

Yes, as a regular thing in Phoenix for 13 years.  It’s regularly over 100 even where I live now.  You kind of get used to the weather after awhile if you expose yourself to it.
At least in Arizona everything has AC.

One year I lost my central air at my house in Scottsdale during the summer.  I had a home warranty but it took forever to gather all the parts necessary to install the new system.  I usually slept most nights out on my pool on an air mattress while I opened all the windows inside the house.  Given this was a tri-level home even floor had an approximately 5 degree difference.  The hottest it ever got on the middle floor where the family room was located at was 102F.  If I had to spend time inside it was usually down in the basement where it was usually in the low 90s or high 80s after cooling overnight.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #20 on: June 29, 2021, 08:46:41 PM »

Any kind of heat that makes my apartment roast, like 85 or so inside when it's 100 plus outside makes me sticky at night. Although it does help when I have fans going and windows opened so that I can at least push some of the heat out, even though it may slightly backdraft. I've managed to place a heat reflector mat like the one you put inside your car on the top half of my bedroom window so it tacks off a couple of degrees or two, and I draw down the shades, but it's no guarantee that it keeps the heat back

A/C is kind of not an option for me as it really eats up my power bill and I'm trying to keep it as low as I can maintain it, about $35 or so a month. I did have a portable A/C at one point but it bumped my power bill to $185 or so. With heat like this in Missoula, I'm kind of in a no-win situation. It makes me have to roll all four windows of my car down slightly so that I can have the air flow through the cabin which makes it at least bearable to climb in without feeling like a roasted boar.

4 PM is when the sun beats my bedroom and it stays that way for several hours until 10 PM or so, and my part of Missoula doesn't get cooled down until around 11 or midnight, which leaves us very few hours of cooling, then it's right back to sweltering heat again just as 9 AM rolls on the following day. 12 to 10 PM are the peak heating hours I've come to calculate based on where I am in Missoula.

Summed up, the heat is one thing about summer that I'm not gonna miss very much.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #21 on: July 08, 2021, 03:59:42 PM »

I'll take 110 with low humidity and a breeze, over 90 with high humidity and no breeze, any day.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #22 on: July 08, 2021, 04:02:13 PM »

I'll take 110 with low humidity and a breeze, over 90 with high humidity and no breeze, any day.

If the actual temperature is over 95, breezes don't help.
http://www.zunis.org/at_least_theres_a_breeze.htm (warning: replacement characters littered throughout whenever there's supposed to be a degree symbol)
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #23 on: July 08, 2021, 04:45:07 PM »


I'll take 110 with low humidity and a breeze, over 90 with high humidity and no breeze, any day.

If the actual temperature is over 95, breezes don't help.
http://www.zunis.org/at_least_theres_a_breeze.htm (warning: replacement characters littered throughout whenever there's supposed to be a degree symbol)

I don't need an article to tell me if a breeze helps or not.  I feel better when there's a breeze.  Period.
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Re: What Is The Worst Kind Of Heat?
« Reply #24 on: July 08, 2021, 05:47:58 PM »

Humidity is absolutely worse. Chicagoland experienced a relative drought for several weeks, and it started to get hot. At work, we had no trouble keeping up. Rain finally came, and humidity followed. That's when it became miserable.
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