One of the most perceptible types of weather is humidity. The percentage of moisture in the air can drastically change how you breathe and your physical health. Some places experience extreme humidity, while others are immensely dry, and you will certainly be able to feel the difference. So you may be wondering, is Oklahoma dry or humid?
Oklahoma is a humid state. The humidity can vary, in the southern half of the state, the annual average is 70% humidity, whereas in the northern panhandle, the average is only 60%. However, the entire state is regarded as humid as anything above 50% is considered high humidity.
In this article, we are going to dig a little deeper into the humidity of Oklahoma, including which areas have the highest and lowest humidity, how the humidity compares to the rest of the country, and even why understanding humidity is important! So keep reading, we have everything you need to know!
Is Oklahoma Humid?
Overall, the answer is a resounding yes, Oklahoma is a humid state. The general consensus is that any humidity percentage under 30% is a dry climate, whereas anything over 50% is considered a humid climate.
Because the state is large, spanning over 70,000 square miles, Oklahoma’s climate ranges from humid subtropical in the east to semi-arid in the west. Consequently, in the southern half of the state, the annual average is 70% humidity, whereas in the northern panhandle, the average is only 60%.
The main reason why Oklahoma is so humid, and specifically why the southern region tends to have a higher humidity percentage, is because of the hot air traveling into the state from the south from the Gulf of Mexico across Texas.
This hot and humid air stream can be severe during the summer months and leaves Oklahoma feeling blistering and muggy from June to August. During the winter months, it can also cause extreme precipitation leading to flash floods, hail storms, and continuously high humidity, even with cold temperatures.
Which Part of Oklahoma Has the Highest Humidity?
As you now know, the southeastern corner of Oklahoma has the highest humidity because of the warm hair arriving from the Gulf of Mexico.
This area is mostly filled with small towns and while it’s hard to say exactly which county or town has the highest humidity, you can expect over 80% humidity during the summer mornings.
Which Part of Oklahoma Has the Lowest Humidity?
Luckily for many Oklahoma residents, the popular cities of Tulsa and Oklahoma city actually have lower humidity than many of the outlying towns.
The average humidity for Tulsa is 66%, which is still quite high compared to the rest of the country and even the standard for humidity, however, it is significantly lower than the southern half of the state.
Oklahoma City is certainly the city in Oklahoma with the lowest humidity. With an annual average of only 54%, it’s almost within the “regular” humidity percentages.
It’s important to note that the average humidity falls even lower as you reach the northern panhandle in Oklahoma, but there are no major cities there.
How Does Oklahoma’s Humidity Compare to the Other States?
If you listed the states in order of humidity, Oklahoma falls somewhere in the middle depending on the year. However, for those who live in Oklahoma or have visited the Sooner state during the summer, you know there is nothing temperate about the humidity.
Oklahoma feels extremely humid and muggy throughout the summer, and even though there are some states that are even more humid, you certainly won’t feel as though you are experiencing moderate humidity.
What are the Health Concerns of High Humidity?
The 30%-50% is recommended for not only your own comfort but also for your physical health. Unfortunately, high humidity can be detrimental as it increases the growth of harmful bacteria such as viruses and mold.
Therefore, it can cause asthma and other respiratory problems as well as increase your chances of getting a viral infection. Although you cannot control the humidity of the outdoors, experts from the EPA recommend keeping your home somewhere in the 30%-50% humidity range with dehumidifiers and various other home appliances.
This does not mean that Oklahoma, with its high humidity, is an unsafe place to live, but it should be considered when planning the heating and cooling system of your home.
To return to our original question: Is Oklahoma dry or humid? Well, hopefully, you know now the answer: Oklahoma is not dry, it is actually quite humid.
With an annual average of between 60% and 70% throughout the state, it far surpasses the comfortable 30%-50% range and whether you are living in Oklahoma or simply there to visit, you will absolutely be able to feel the humidity throughout the summer months.