Why is Daylight Savings Time earlier each year?

Honestly I don't mind Daylight Savings Time coming earlier, but am curious to know the reason behind it.

For example: 2017-2020. In 2017, it was March 12-November 5. 2018: March 11 to November 4, 2019: March 10 to November 3 and for this year 2020: March 8 to November 1. The only reason it went 10 to 8 is because of leap year. I don't mind it because it's right before my bday in March where I do prefer it lighter out later, but it also sucks at the same time in my opinion because once it hits November, it will become darker earlier.

Would anyone happen to know why Daylight Savings Time is coming earlier each year? I had noticed this pattern for the last few years and I just now tried to do a little research on this particular topic, but couldn't find anything on why it's coming earlier than later.

7 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    In the USA its timing is determined by Congress.  The inner workings of Congress in this matter is mysterious indeed.

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  • Clive
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Because it's always on a Sunday as that's most convenient for most people, and clearly where you are it's set to start on the second Sunday in March.  This is going to move back one date every year, as 365 days is 52 weeks + 1 day.  Or of course 2 days in leap years.

    So you will find that in 2021, it should move back to March 7 - but ah, that's the FIRST Sunday in March, so it will jump forwards to March 14 and then continue to move one date earlier again in 2022 onwards.  Until it hits March 7 again and so on round and round.

    See?  With a 365-day year, a 7-day week that doesn't fit exactly into that, and the rule of "Xth Sunday in the month" to begin and end DST, this is how it will work out.

    It's all rather debatable whether we should have it at all, but the main point is so that in summer when the Sun rises earlier, we can get up earlier too and make more use of daylight hours.  Unfortunately this means a sudden jump to getting up in darkness when the clocks go back in November.

    I'm British so I'm further north than you so the length of daylight changes more, so maybe it makes a little more sense here but past a certain point, it starts to get silly.  In WWII we tried Double Summer Time for a couple of years, but there's only so many hours you can reasonably work in a day and once you start thinking about Scotland, even the shorter school day means children going to school and coming home in the dark whatever you do.  Unless you make the school day even shorter.  Even here in the south of England, in summer as a boy I could stay out late playing in the park with friends until about 9 pm or so, but in winter it's getting dark around school "home time".

    Now try living in the north of Alaska, where there are days in summer when the Sun doesn't set, and in winter there are days when it never rises.  Why do they even bother with DST there?  They could just not do it at all, like Arizona.

    But I digress...  to go back to the actual question, it's just how the sums work out because of the way DST is defined.

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  • 1 month ago

    there is a week-long period within which the date will migrate as the imperfect number of 7 day weeks divides into 365 days per year (actually about 365.25 which is where the leap year comes from, the leap day every 4 years).  So, the date of "Sunday" (which is the day on which DST always changes) has to change as the years pass.  Eventually, though, the the second Sunday of the month (or whatever, does not matter what specific Sunday, only that it IS a specific Sunday) will migrate, bottom out if you will, and jump back up.

    Same idea as how Thanksgiving is always the 4th Thursday of November.  That date varies from 22 Nov to 28 Nov.  It cycles backward until a new week gets inserted in front, and then it pops back from 22 or 23 November (depends on leap year) to 27 or 28 Nov, counting down once again, over and over and over.

    It is really the same thing as whether my birthday on the 25th of a month will happen in the fourth or fifth "week" of a month.  this year, for example, the first day of March is a Sunday, so the 25th is in the fourth week but last year, the first was a Friday (because this year is a leap year so the jump is 2 days) so the 25th was in the fifth week.

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  • 1 month ago

    Actual dates fluctuate a bit, but the change is when earth crosses the ascending and descending nodes on the ecliptic.

    • Clive
      Lv 7
      1 month agoReport

      No it isn't.  It's on a set Sunday.

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  • Its always the 2nd Sunday in March, it would be very difficult and inconvenient to have it on an exact date, the earliest it can be is the 8th and the latest is the 14th, I don't think anyone could really notice a difference of a day or two from one year to the next

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  • Bill
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    The date changes each year because it's always a Sunday, the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November in the US. In 2022 It will be March 13.

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  • 1 month ago

    Its earlier than when Britain and Europe go onto DST thanks to Bush 43.in 2007. Bush signed the Billion 2005, but it did not go into effect until 2007.  DST was extended  both earlier AND later in the USA. For Europe , the switch is 2 weeks later around the vernal equinox. It turns out that it does NOT save energy, but it does increase the economy because tourists and farmers can recreate or work longer. The Sun RISES and SETS an hour later. The reasons for DST are economic and cultural. I'm lived in Arizona for a year. Arizona does NOT observe DST except on Indian reservations.       

    https://www.timetemperature.com/tzus/daylight_savi... 

    As the others have said, It always stars AND ENDS on a Sunday. 

    L

    Thank you for giving the date this year. Super Tues day, which is on MY birthday like it was in 2016, will be before we set the clocks ahead 1 hour. 

    Thank Bush 43. I want to see what happens with DST in Alabama. Or was that Georgia? The state legislatures decide whether a state observes DST or not. Indiana did NOT observe DST. Now 70 counties observe EDT and 7 counties observe CDT. 

    • Clive
      Lv 7
      1 month agoReport

      Of course you could have answered the question that was asked.

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