I am building a Hydrogen Sulphide gas detector for battery charging rooms using a MQ-136 sensor. I have searched everywhere for the answer to this question:-

Can the sensor be powered continuously? I saw a forum comment (in french) on stack exchange saying if the MQ sensors are left powered on they will burn out in less than a week. No-one seemed to challenge this statement.

I'm wanting to leave the sensor heater powered 24/7 so it can detect for gas as batteries are often left on charge over weekends and overnight. The system will disconnect the chargers if gas is detected from an overcharged or faulty battery. I could write code to take readings every hour with the sensor turned off in between but the sensor would not last long if it only has a lifespan of a week.

I'm thinking more that the forum post is wrong but I need confirmation from someone who has used the MQ series of sensors. There's nothing in the datasheet to suggest you can't power them continuously.

Can anyone offer any advice?

  • \$\begingroup\$ If it takes (say) 10 seconds to get a reading and you did that every hour for instance, that's a duty cycle of 1/360 and will extend the week of life to 360 weeks or about 7 years. \$\endgroup\$
    – Andy aka
    Feb 22, 2018 at 13:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ Why don't You just ask the manufacturer? \$\endgroup\$ Feb 22, 2018 at 15:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ I did ask the manufacturer but they were not much help. I got a message back in broken English which basically said they didn't know. Sainsmart who made the board the sensor is mounted on said it 'might' damage the sensor if powered 24/7. \$\endgroup\$ Feb 24, 2018 at 21:56

1 Answer 1


I have used the MQ-6 extensively. It takes minutes to warm up to get a stable reading. My experience is that if you stay within the voltage specifications for this device it will last 2-3 years before it burns out.

If you only need a reading every hour the approach of powering it up for a few minutes and taking a reading will make it last much longer.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, that's just what I needed to know. I've seen some datasheets for this sensor saying lifespan is 2 to 5 years depending on which one you read. I think it will be just fine then powered constantly. \$\endgroup\$ Feb 24, 2018 at 21:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.