How Do I Create a Data Type for Time in SQL?


Scott Campbell

How Do I Create a Data Type for Time in SQL?

When working with databases, it is often necessary to store and manipulate time-related information. SQL offers several data types to handle time values, such as DATE, DATETIME, and TIMESTAMP.

However, what if you only need to store the time component without the date? In this tutorial, we will explore how to create a custom data type for time in SQL.

Step 1: Understanding the Requirements

Before we begin creating our custom time data type, let’s first clarify the requirements. In this example, we want to store time values in the format HH:MM:SS (hours, minutes, and seconds).

Step 2: Defining the Data Type

To define our custom time data type, we can use SQL’s VARCHAR or CHAR data types. These data types allow us to store character strings of a specified length.

For our purposes, let’s assume that a maximum of 8 characters is sufficient to represent our time values (e.g., ’12:34:56′). Therefore, we can create our custom data type as follows:


By defining this custom type, we can now use it as a column type in any table within our database.

Step 3: Utilizing the Custom Data Type

Now that we have created our custom time data type, let’s see how we can use it effectively. We will demonstrate this by creating a sample table called ‘ExampleTable’ with a column named ‘time_column’ of type ‘TimeType’.

CREATE TABLE ExampleTable (
    time_column TimeType

Once the table is created, you can insert time values into the ‘time_column’ column using the specified format (‘HH:MM:SS’).

Step 4: Querying the Custom Data Type

When querying the table that contains our custom time data type, we need to handle it appropriately. For example, to retrieve all rows where the time is greater than ’09:00:00′, we can use the following query:

SELECT * FROM ExampleTable WHERE time_column > '09:00:00';

Remember to ensure that any comparison or manipulation of time values is done in a consistent format, adhering to the predefined structure.


In this tutorial, we have learned how to create a custom data type for time in SQL. By defining our own data type using VARCHAR or CHAR and specifying a length, we can effectively store and manipulate time values without including the date component.

This allows for more efficient storage and retrieval of time-related information within our database.

Now that you understand how to create a custom data type for time in SQL, you can apply this knowledge to your own projects and enhance your database management capabilities.

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