The easiest way to reduce your carbon footprint is to take a good look at your everyday energy usage in your home. You can cut your home energy bills as much as 25 percent by following these simple steps.

Replace your light bulbs. Switch out all your incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). The cost up front may be more but these bulbs usually last five-times longer (on average 3-10 years depending on usage) than a traditional light bulb and come in all shapes and forms. However, CFL bulbs contain a small amount of mercury, a neurotoxin, so it's important to recycle them and not throw them in the trash. Home Depot has take-back programs. Hot water. Make sure your water heater is set to 120 degrees. Some thermostats are preset to 140 degrees, which can cost more money on your natural gas bill. Heating and cooling. Invest in a programmable thermostat that will automatically lower the indoor temperature at night and when you're away from home. Plug your home's leaks. Weather-strip, seal, and caulk leaky doors and windows and add extra insulation if necessary. Laundry. Wash your clothes in cold water and wash full loads. Dishwasher. Always wash a full load in your dishwasher and air-dry your dishes on the "energy saver" setting. Turn it off and unplug it. Unplug your cell phone chargers, DVD players, radios, cable boxes and other appliances when not in use. Believe it or not, anything plugged into a live outlet will draw a small amount of power even if the appliance/electronics item is turned off. Water use. Conserve water by taking shorter showers and only watering your garden in the early morning or at night. The best thing you can do to conserve the most water and save on your water bill in the long run is to replace your lawn and garden with native plants. Native plants do not need as much water and chemicals as ornamental plants and traditional lawns.
Lawn care. Switch to electric or battery operated lawn care equipment. The most environmentally friendly lawn mower is the kind you push yourself.