1. K-State home
  2. »Research and Extension
  3. »KCARE
  4. »Big Creek and Middle Smoky Hill Watersheds
  5. »Rain Barrels

Kansas Center for Agricultural Resources and the Environment (KCARE)

Rain barrels are rolling into your neighborhood!

Springtime storms can mean deluges of rain: it runs off rooftops, gushes down gutters and sprays into drainage systems.  It’s a lot of excess water, and it can be used at your house! For as little as $30 and 30 minutes of work, you can make your own rain barrel storage system. The water you collect is great for washing your car, gardening, cleaning patio surfaces, or any other landscaping job around your home. Watch this 10-minute, easy-to-follow video, to get a list of equipment, clear instructions, and steps for home installation. Don’t let that water go to waste! KCARE'S "Roll Out the Rain Barrel" project has built more than 6.500 rain barrels since 2006. Read more about the project and how much it has accomplished. If you are interested in printable instructions on how to build your own rain barrel, go to KCARE's Publications page.

These barrels offer many benefits to you, your town, and your landscape. Remember, rain barrels are not a new idea, just a forgotten practice.

For more information contact:
Stacie Minson, (785)769-3297 or email at sedgett@ksu.edu

Rain barrels are available at Cottonwood Extension District office in Hays. Call 785-628-9430 for more information, or to reserve a rain barrel for your home! 

Do you want to use rain barrels on your property? Download the registration form for pricing information and other details.


Interested in general information about rain barrels? The following video gives you some basic information about using rain barrels.

Once you have ordered a rain barrel and installed it, how do you maintain it? This video gives details about winterizing your rain barrel, why keeping clean gutters is important, and how to treat algae that might form in your rain barrel.


Want to make a rain barrel for yourself, rather than ordering one ready-made? This video is for you!

"Water collection can be easier than I thought and we each can make a difference"

-Participant at the Wichita event in Sept. 2009