Every time I check manually, Norton updates, there are some. Is this something the program should do when I turn it on ?
Updates to the Norton products are released to the update servers as they are ready. The automatic LiveUpdate will run about every hour and pick up any updates your system did not have yet. If you happen to manually run between these automatic runs, and Norton has added any updates to the update servers, your Norton will download those updates.
What you are seeing is totally normal, and in no way indicates any reduced protection for your system.