When does WA spring forward? Daylight saving time 2024 explained

Standard time is soon coming to an end to make way for daylight saving time in most parts of the United States, including Washington state.

You’ll lose an hour of sleep for one night but gain more daylight in the evening in the months ahead.

When is daylight saving time 2024?

The transition to daylight saving time — sometimes incorrectly referred to by the plural daylight savings time — is official at 2 a.m. local time Sunday, March 10 across much of the country, including Washington state. Then, on March 20, winter sunsets and spring is sprung.

When does daylight saving time end?

Until daylight saving time ends in the wee hours of Nov. 5, the sun will rise later in the morning than it has during standard time but it will stay light for longer until the evening.


The history of daylight saving time

Daylight saving time is literally meant as a time for saving daylight hours. Attempts to harness daylight hours go back over a century, with motivations rooted in patriotism, practicality and public opinion.

It’s a good idea to set clocks an hour ahead before bed Saturday night.

Will it be darker in the morning when clocks go back?

Yes, the transition between DST and standard time means darker mornings and more light in the evening.

According to the Sleep Foundation, the transition can delay your sleep-wake cycle, meaning you feel tired in the morning and more alert in the evening.

Is daylight saving losing or gaining an hour?

In March, when daylight saving time begins standard time ends, the clock "springs forward" which means you essentially lose an hour. The clock moves from 2 a.m. to 3 a.m.

In November, when daylight saving time ends and standard time begins, the clock "falls back" which means you get an extra hour. The clock moves from 2 a.m. back to 1 a.m.

Which states do not observe daylight saving time?

No time change is observed in Hawaii, most of Arizona, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Marianas.

Is switching the clock back good for your health?

Dr. Nathaniel Watson, a professor of neurology and co-founder of the UW Medicine Sleep Center, says standard time is healthier on the human body.

"There are three clocks that we have: We have a body clock, we have a sun clock and we have a social clock. Our health is optimized when our body clock is aligned with the sun clock, and that's most aligned when we're on standard time," said Watson.

Few people get excited about losing an hour of sleep when the country "springs forward" in March.

"When we go to daylight saving time, it's like dosing the entire population with an hour of permanent jet lag, and we know this has untoward consequences for health," said Watson, "when we spring forward — increased heart attacks, strokes, mental health gets impaired, accidents."

Standard time vs. daylight saving time

"Nobody wants to change clocks back and forth," said Watson, "I think we can all agree on that."

Watson argues that the twice-a-year time change often gets conflated with moving to permanent daylight saving time — a move that many states in the U.S., including Washington, have chewed on. Watson says that is not good enough.

"The reality is that permanent standard time is the more natural way to go about our lives," said Watson. "We live in a society where the [Centers for Disease Control & Prevention] says sleep deprivation is a public health epidemic. About a third of our population is not getting the seven or eight hours of sleep that we need to support optimal health."

A poll conducted in October 2021 found that most people in the United States want to avoid switching between daylight saving time and standard time, though there is no consensus behind which should be used all year.

The poll from The Associated Press — NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found only 25% of those questioned said they preferred to switch back and forth between standard and daylight saving time. Forty-three percent said they would like to see standard time used during the entire year. Thirty-two percent said they would prefer that daylight saving time be used all year.


Bill to make daylight saving time permanent reintroduced in Senate

Should we make daylight saving time permanent?

The Associated Press contributed to this story.