AS winter approaches, residents are being urged to make sure their homes are ready for the cold.

Last winter, more than 154,000 homes across Scotland experienced a boiler breakdown.

And during the Beast from the East, temperatures of below -10°C led to the busiest week on record for Scottish Gas.

Renfrewshire South MSP Tom Arthur is encouraging people to get clued up on how to protect themselves this winter.

Mr Arthur, whose constituency takes in parts of Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire, said: “I want everyone to understand what help is available to them, and for their family and friends.”

Julie Dickson, Scottish Gas Service and Repair engineer, said: “I would advise people to bleed their radiators. Fitting draught excluders is also a quick way to cut down on your energy bills.”

Residents are also advised to install a smart meter, give their boilers a workout before it gets too cold and install a carbon monoxide detector.

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