Summertime in Washington, on R Street NW. (Tim Brown via Flickr )

* Code orange air quality for today*

*Heat Advisory for today *

TODAY’S DAILY DIGIT
A somewhat subjective rating of the day’s weather, on a scale of zero to 10.

2/10: When temperatures get too high, we go low.

EXPRESS FORECAST

Today: Mostly sunny, very hot and humid. Highs: 93-97.
Tonight: Very muggy. Lows: 73-80.
Tomorrow: Mostly sunny, very hot and humid. Highs: 93-97.

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FORECAST IN DETAIL

The heat is on! Our hottest two days of August — and some of the hottest of the summer — hit today and tomorrow. Temperatures take another big step up through the 90s and heat indexes charge above 100, thanks to high humidity levels. We’ve got a few clouds possible, but we won’t get much help until a better chance for thunderstorms arrives Thursday afternoon and a cool front sweeps in by Friday. The holiday weekend looks complicated, with daily chances of showers and storms. It shouldn’t be a complete washout, though.

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Today (Tuesday): It’s hot and humid as temperatures advance upward through the morning faster than yesterday, reaching their afternoon peaks mid-90s most spots, but a few could hit the upper 90s if things come together right. We could see some slight filter to the sunshine in the morning due to high-altitude smoke again, but less of that in the afternoon, although air quality won’t be great. High humidity means the heat index goes into triple digits and all outside activity should involve both caution and hydration. Light winds come from the south.  Confidence: High

Tonight: It remains very muggy and uncomfortable as the city only drops to around 80 and into the 70s in the suburbs for lows. This is under mostly clear skies and in concert with an unhelpful light breeze from the southwest. Confidence: High

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Tomorrow (Wednesday): Part two of our very hot day duo hits with similar mostly sunny skies, highs in the mid-90s or a bit higher, and heat indexes into the 100s again.  Light and toasty breezes from the southwest. Confidence: High

Tomorrow night: Just a few clouds are around, along with very muggy conditions as lows drop into the 70s to around 80 once more. Confidence: High

A LOOK AHEAD

Thursday should start off partly to mostly sunny in the morning, with temperatures charging up toward the lower 90s by midday or early afternoon, before more clouds get going and showers or storms start popping by middle to late afternoon and offer some relief. Some of the storms could see heavy downpours as temperatures pull back into the evening. Look for lingering scattered showers and storms Thursday night. Temperatures Thursday night drop to the upper 60s to low 70s under partly cloudy skies. Confidence: Medium

Friday is our coolest day of this workweek, as mostly cloudy skies and a cooler breeze from the east combine to help hold temperatures down into the low 80s for highs. We’ll also kick off scattered showers and maybe some thunderstorms again, especially in the afternoon. Scattered showers and storms continue Friday night, with lows around 70.  Confidence: Medium

The Labor Day holiday weekend is somewhat of a messy story as a front stalls around the area and we slowly break free of a relatively cooler easterly flow. All three days run the risk of mainly afternoon to evening showers and thunderstorms, with more of a cloudier lean Saturday and then a partly sunny to partly cloudy mix on Sunday and Labor Day. Highs are cooler Saturday, with lower to middle 80s likely, before mid-80s Sunday and mid-to-upper 80s Monday. Some shower or evening thunderstorm chances continue each night with lows around 70. Confidence: Low-Medium