Using hay, está, or an impersonal verb to talk about the weather

In Spanish, one of the impersonal expressions we use to talk about the weather is hay:

Hoy hay tormenta.
There is a storm today.

Hay relámpagos.
There is lightning.

Hay truenos.
There is thunder.

Hay niebla.
It is foggy.

There are some other phrases which use está:

El cielo está despejado.
There are clear skies.

Está soleado.
It is sunny.

Bear in mind that hay will be followed by a noun, while está will be followed by an adjective.

Hay truenos (truenos thunder [noun])

Está soleado (soleadosunny [adjective])

There are also phrases which can use either está or an impersonal verb:

Está lloviendo.
It is raining.

Llueve.
It is raining.

Está nevando.
It is snowing.

Nieva.
It is snowing.

For other expressions to talk about the weather see also:

Using hace to talk about the weather

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

Nieva.
It is snowing.


Está nublado.
It is cloudy.


Llueve.
It is raining.


Hay truenos.
There is thunder.


Está nevando.
It is snowing.


Hay relámpagos.
There is lightning.


El cielo está despejado.
There are clear skies.


Está lloviendo.
It is raining.


Hoy hay tormenta.
There is a storm today.


Está soleado.
It is sunny.


Hay niebla.
It is foggy.


Q&A

Lyn

Kwiziq community member

22 April 2019

2 replies

Está or Hay? The weather. I just don't get it!

Está soleado         Literally "It is sunny."  (There is sun)   .

Hay niebla             Literally "there is fog"   (It is foggy)

  I have studied and studied this lesson but I keep getting it wrong. Grrr!

What is the rule, please?

Lyn

Inma

Kwiziq language super star

25 April 2019

25/04/19

Hola Lyn

This lesson is about expressions when talking about the weather. It is idiomatic, so they don't have literal translations.

There is no specific rule. Some weather expressions use "hay", some "está", some "hace" (that is a different kwiziq lesson though) and some an impersonal verb like "llover" (to rain) or "nevar" (to snow) in the 3rd person singular, i.e "llueve" or "nieva".

Sometimes we can say the same thing using more than one structure, for example, you can say "it is sunny": 

1. Está soleado, or 2. Hace sol

There is a bit of memorising to do with this lesson.

We do give a little tip though in the lesson saying that if an expression uses "hay" a noun (in Spanish) needs to follow, for example "hay truenos". If an expression uses "está" then an adjective (in Spanish) will follow, for example "está nublado/soleado".

I hope it helped you understand it better.

Saludos

Inma

Lyn

Kwiziq community member

6 May 2019

6/05/19

Gracias Inma. 

Celia

Kwiziq community member

30 March 2019

1 reply

For “Hoy hay tormenta”, why is not “Hoy hay una tormenta”?

Inma

Kwiziq language super star

1 April 2019

1/04/19

Hola Celia

We tend to not use the articles when talking about the weather in this sort of sentences. However if we were to be a bit more specific we would use the article, for example:

"Hay una tormenta terrible en el norte de España"

 (There is a terrible storm in the north of Spain)

I hope this helps,

Saludos

Inma

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