You need to be able to identify if the gold you are buying is genuine before you can make a purchase. With gold prices rising, there are always gold scams in the news.
We have created a guide to help you distinguish real gold from fake gold when buying or selling gold. Let’s get to the point.
Keep an eye out for Hallmarks
A hallmark is a way to determine if the gold you are buying is genuine. Hallmarks are stamps that identify the gold’s karat.
Keep in mind that different countries have different karat measurements. The number you will find in the United States ranges from 12 to 24. You’ll find a number from to 1.000 in Europe.
It could be that you are unable to spot the hallmark on the piece of gold you’re purchasing. If the hallmark is worn, it could be an indication that the item has lost its value.
Look out for a letter mark
A letter mark is another type of mark you should look out for on gold. A stamp reading GP, GEP or GF on gold means that the jewelry has been either gold-plated, gold-electroplated or gold-filled.
The jewelry could contain gold but it is not the only metal. It would not be considered a gold item if it contained enough gold.
Use Nitric Acid to Test the Gold
You can use nitric acid to find out if gold is real. This chemical can be dangerous so be careful.
Make a small scratch on your gold item to perform this test. The mark must be deep enough that it can penetrate the item’s top layer.
Next, add a little bit of nitric to the scratch. The item is not really gold if the acid turns the scratch green or milky. The acid will not react with items made from pure gold or the majority of it.
You should perform this test in a suitable laboratory setting, as the acid can be very dangerous. You can also take the gold to a professional jeweler, who will conduct the test.
Check the Density
The density of gold is 19.3g/mL. Purer gold items will have a density close to that of the original, while less pure items will have a lower density.
You will need a scale that is both in grams and a graduated cylinder that measures fluids to determine the density of gold. It should be large enough to hold your item.
Then weigh the gold and take a note about its weight. Fill your cylinder with water to half its capacity and take note of how many milliliters it holds.
Next, add the gold to the water and note the new level. To determine the volume of your gold item, subtract the water level at the first level from the water level at the second level.
Divide the volume of the golden by its weight. This will give you the density and help you to determine how close it is the true gold density, 19.3g/mL.
Keep in mind that other metals can have densities similar to gold’s. To get the best results, you should perform this test with other people.
Ceramic vs. Gold
You can test your gold by scratching it against ceramic if you are willing. This shouldn’t do any major damage to your gold.
Use an unglazed ceramic tile to do this. If the item leaves a streak of gold on the tile, it is most likely real. It’s most likely fake if the streak appears black.
Place the gold in water
You can also use this method to check if the gold you are buying is genuine or fake. You should ensure that there is enough water in the container to completely cover the item.
Next, add the gold to the water. The heavy metal of gold should sink to bottom of glass. Fake gold is often lighter and will float on the top of the water.
It is not real if gold starts to tarnish from being in water. Real gold isn’t affected by rust or tarnish, which is why it’s so precious.
Use a strong magnet
A strong magnet is a quick way to determine if gold is real. The magnet should not be held close to any piece of gold. Gold is not magnetic.
The magnet could react to gold if it is mixed with other magnetic metals, like iron. It is highly likely that gold jewelry will react if you buy it.
Learn How to Tell If Gold Is Real
This guide will help you distinguish real gold from fake. This skill will last a lifetime, as you’ll be able to distinguish real gold from fake.
Are you interested in buying genuine gold from a dealer certified? Contact our team to purchase high-quality products made of gold.
How to tell if gold is real: The Ultimate Guide CMI Silver & Gold.