States Where It Is Illegal to Collect Rainwater

When it rains, it is possible to gather rainwater for a variety of uses. When rainwater is filtered properly to remove potentially harmful contaminants, it can be used for bathing, drinking, and cooking. Without filtering rainwater for fine particle contaminants, it can be used outdoors for irrigating gardens, for instance. However, rainwater gathering isn’t a free-for-all, as some states restrict rainwater gathering and how the water can be used. 

Restrictions for how one can go about gathering rainwater and how they can use it after it has been gathered varies between states. Certain states, such as Colorado, allow the capture of rainwater, but they mandate that captured rainwater must be used outdoors, on the property on which it was gathered, and in a non-potable way, such as for watering one’s lawn. 

Colorado’s state approved rain gathering system permits two rain barrels with a joint capacity of one hundred and ten gallons to be used to collect rainwater from a catchment system attached to their roofs. Additionally, other states require a permit to legally collect rainwater or to use a rainwater capture system on their property.

On the other hand, there are many states that don’t have laws regulating or restricting the capture of rainwater for outdoor or indoor potable usage. Some states even offer incentives for their residents to capture rainwater, either in the entire state or in a specific city. 

To learn more about rainwater collection laws, explore the data in the charts. 

Rainwater Collection Laws by State

Alabama - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,656.1

#3 in the US

Alaska - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,006.3

#28 in the US

Arizona - Rainwater Collection Laws

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319

#47 in the US

Arkansas - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,280.7

#10 in the US

California - Rainwater Collection Laws

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481.1

#40 in the US

Colorado - Rainwater Collection Laws

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434.3

#42 in the US

Connecticut - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,297.2

#9 in the US

Delaware - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,038.6

#26 in the US

Florida - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,406.1

#6 in the US

Georgia - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,446.8

#5 in the US

Hawaii - Rainwater Collection Laws

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Idaho - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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531.9

#39 in the US

Illinois - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,043.9

#25 in the US

Indiana - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,161.5

#18 in the US

Iowa - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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790.4

#32 in the US

Kansas - Rainwater Collection Laws

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692.2

#36 in the US

Kentucky - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,356.4

#8 in the US

Louisiana - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,688.8

#2 in the US

Maine - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,001.3

#29 in the US

Maryland - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,056.1

#24 in the US

Massachusetts - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,390.7

#7 in the US

Michigan - Rainwater Collection Laws

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835.9

#31 in the US

Minnesota - Rainwater Collection Laws

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601.2

#37 in the US

Mississippi - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,695.5

#1 in the US

Missouri - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,118.4

#19 in the US

Montana - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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363.2

#45 in the US

Nebraska - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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575.3

#38 in the US

Nevada - Rainwater Collection Laws

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243.3

#49 in the US

New Hampshire - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,166.9

#17 in the US

New Jersey - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,218.9

#12 in the US

New Mexico - Rainwater Collection Laws

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314.2

#48 in the US

New York - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,175.5

#15 in the US

North Carolina - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,209.3

#13 in the US

North Dakota - Rainwater Collection Laws

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395.7

#43 in the US

Ohio - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,058.2

#23 in the US

Oklahoma - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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855

#30 in the US

Oregon - Rainwater Collection Laws

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723.9

#35 in the US

Pennsylvania - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,171.4

#16 in the US

Rhode Island - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,264.2

#11 in the US

South Carolina - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,205.7

#14 in the US

South Dakota - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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461.5

#41 in the US

Tennessee - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,497.1

#4 in the US

Texas - Rainwater Collection Laws

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732.3

#34 in the US

Utah - Rainwater Collection Laws

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344.2

#46 in the US

Vermont - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,063.8

#22 in the US

Virginia - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,037.8

#27 in the US

Washington - Rainwater Collection Laws

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1,114.8

#20 in the US

West Virginia - Rainwater Collection Laws

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No Restrictions

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1,081.8

#21 in the US

Wisconsin - Rainwater Collection Laws

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760.2

#33 in the US

Wyoming - Rainwater Collection Laws

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365.5

#44 in the US

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