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  • AZCentral | The Arizona Republic

    This is the hottest time of day in metro Phoenix: Here's what to know about summer temps

    By Fernando Cervantes Jr. and Shelby Slade, Arizona Republic,


    As the sun beats on you and beads of sweat trickle down your neck while you dash to the nearest air-conditioned space, you might be thinking it couldn't get much hotter.

    With metro Phoenix set to possibly hit 110 again this week and a heat dome still covering the western U.S., it may feel like every day is a rerun of the same hot day.

    While you're preparing for your hot week, you should consider that the hottest time of day in metro Phoenix isn't noon. It gets even hotter after that.

    Here's what to know about the hottest time of day and when it finally starts to cool off in metro Phoenix during the summer.

    When is the hottest time of day in Phoenix?

    Tom Frieders, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Phoenix, said the hottest time of the day is usually between 2 and 5 p.m. But this could change depending on environmental factors.

    When monsoon thunderstorms develop, the rain cools the air. That cooling can affect when the hottest time of day occurs.

    "If they develop sooner, then your high temperatures could be earlier in the day,” Frieders said.

    Let's settle a debate, Arizona.What temperature do you set your AC thermostat at?

    When is the most dangerous time of day in metro Phoenix?

    The most dangerous time of the day for people is during the afternoon and early evening hours, Frieders said. Many factors make this time the hottest and with the worst ultraviolet rays.

    “The sun angle is the highest, temperatures are the warmest and the threat for heat illness is the greatest,” Frieders said.

    In metro Phoenix in 2023, 645 people died from heat, shattering the record set the previous year with a 52% increase.

    “We're really hoping people take the heat seriously,” Frieders said. “Do your outdoor activities early in the day, limit your exposure during the maximum heat in the afternoon and early evening hours, and stay hydrated."

    When does the sun go down in Phoenix?Here's what to know about how sunset affects heat

    What time of the day is the coldest?

    On the other hand, the coolest time of the day is not in the middle of the night, surprisingly. It's not even during the night. Instead, it's just after the sun rises in the morning.

    “Once the sun rises, you are still cooling just slightly typically for a little bit after sunrise. Once the sun gets high enough in the sky it starts to heat the ground again,” Frieders said.

    Arizona Republic reporter Kira Caspers contributed to this article.

    The key ingredient:How do monsoon storms form in Arizona?

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