6. Use High-Efficiency Outdoor Lighting A typical 100-watt floodlight, if used for six hours a day, can consume up to $40 of electricity over the course of a year and produce upwards of 400 pounds of carbon dioxide, depending on where you live. For starters, replace those floodlights with compact-fluorescent versions-they’re just as bright and use a quarter of the energy. Next, replace low-wattage halogen landscape bulbs with LED versions. They cut energy use by over 80 percent and can last for 10 years or more. Finally, install motion sensors on any nonessential lights. New versions just screw right into your existing light socket.
7. Replace High-Use Indoor Lights with Compact Fluorescents or LEDs With high-quality light, sizes for almost any fixture and even versions that are dimmable, compact fluorescents have it all. They’re more expensive than normal light bulbs, but between the energy savings and their much longer life spans, they pay for themselves in less than two years. And consider LED bulbs for non-dimmable circuits (especially for holiday lighting). They’re true energy misers and will last for as long as you live in your house.
8. Load Up the Washing Machines Make sure you run the dishwasher and the clothes washers only when they’re full. Clothes washers are huge energy and water users, so make sure you’re doing full loads (or adjusting the water setting) whenever possible. And most of us use far more water (and soap) than we need to when hand-washing dishes, especially when compared with high-efficiency Energy Star dishwashers. So save your time, water and power by putting those dishes directly in the dishwasher after a meal.