1. Battery Recharger

A battery recharger is not another useless gadget. It really saves money and reduces waste. Of course, you'll have to buy rechargeable batteries to go with it, but the savings add up quickly. A battery recharger is especially advantageous if you have children with battery-eating toys.

2. Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs< /strong>

You've probably heard a lot about compact fluorescent bulbs or CFLs, but that's because they really do save energy. They are attractive little gadgets with their twisty shape, but if you have lampshades that fit over conventional light bulbs, CFLs come housed in light bulb-shaped casing. Types and sizes of CFLs are always expanding, from outdoor lighting to lamps.

3. The Energy Detective

This gadget will satisfy your inner geek and save you money. It is a small, simple device that clamps onto the incoming channels of your breaker box. The device picks up information about how much electricity is being used, then sends that information to a "Gateway," which stores the data.

The Gateway is plugged into any outlet, and sends the information wirelessly to a small, wireless, LED display screen. Look at the screen to see how much electricity you are using in real time. Now you can pick and choose where, when and how to cut back on your energy use around your home.

4. Solar Lights for Outdoors

Whether you want to light your porch steps, driveway, or add attractive lighting to your garden, solar lights are neat gadgets that have a real use. They save enormous amounts of energy and most of them will come on automatically when it begins to get dark. You can get solar-powered Christmas lights for outdoor decorating, too.

5. Programmable Thermostats

This is a gadget that really saves energy. It provides precise temperature control – a very helpful thing when one or two degrees in the temperature setting can make a big difference. The thermostat will turn itself off and on automatically once it's programmed, so you don't have to try to remember to do it. You can set it so the house is warm when you get up and cool when you go to sleep, and still save energy. This is one of those gadgets that adds to indoor comfort and still saves money.

6. Light Timers

Whether it's your desk lamp, outdoor flood light, or Christmas tree lights, timers are invaluable for safety and energy savings. Set the timer so the Christmas lights or room lamps are off at bedtime and when you're not home, and on at dusk. This not only gives the appearance that someone is home at dark, but it also prevents fires from accidentally leaving the Christmas lights on. You just have to adjust the timing to coincide with your schedule.

Most lamp timers have multiple settings; you can set the lights to come on and off at anywhere from four to six different intervals. Some timers have 24 tabs, one per hour, and you can press them in or pull them out at many intervals.

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