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I need to reference a range of temperatures and am not sure the best way to phrase this in a sentence. I am using these weather maps and need to explain the average range for high and low temps in April. The way it's currently written I find the plural of the temperature confusing but it cannot be removed since that would make the statement inaccurate and lead people to believe, for example, that 60 was the high temp when in reality it may have been 69.

My sentence currently reads: April is a transitional month for weather nationally with average lows ranging in the 20s-60s degrees ºF and highs ranging 40s-80s ºF.

I am also experimenting with removing the numeric characters and spelling them out if this makes it more clear: April is a transitional month for weather nationally with average lows ranging in the twenties-sixties and highs ranging forties-eighties degrees Fahrenheit.

  • It's very common to just use "degrees" in plural form when talking about temperatures whether you have a singular or plural so I wouldn't worry about it. Looks good to me except you need a comma after nationally and one just before "and highs" – Kace36 Jul 19 '17 at 22:06
  • @lindsay your sentence sounds pretty good as is. What are you trying to accomplish? – Devil07 Jul 19 '17 at 22:12
  • Oh and to be clear it is fine the way it is, the commas were just a suggestion to set off those phrases. It works well either way though. – Kace36 Jul 19 '17 at 22:14
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    In the context of temperature reports, I'd rather see the numbers as numerals than as words. – Lawrence Jul 20 '17 at 1:00
  • Style guides don't like the degree symbol used like that. When used, it should be attached to the numeral without a space. In the case of 20s, don't use the symbol see example in 5th para. 20s is a range. 20s - 60s is a range of ranges. "... lows ranging in the 20s-60s degrees ºF and highs ranging 40s-80s ºF" is a list of ranges of ranges. Not saying it fails, but it could be tidier. – Phil Sweet Jul 20 '17 at 2:32
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Try:

"April is a transitional month for weather nationally with average low temperatures ranging from 20 to 60ºF and average high temperatures ranging from 40 to 80ºF."

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    This is much better. – Richard Kayser Jul 20 '17 at 0:50
  • yes, except it should probably read 20 to 70 and 40 to 90. – Phil Sweet Jul 20 '17 at 2:36
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Or try:

April is a transitional month for weather nationally, with average lows in the 20 to 60 ºF range and highs in the 40 to 80 ºF range.

Couple of things

  • 20s to 60s degrees. Too many plurals here.
  • Comma after nationally
  • ºF is degree Farenheit effectively making that part of your sentence "degree degree Farenheit".
  • I've considered your potential audience as people who want more information and less words.

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