Fake gold is a problem that many of us jewellery lovers can easily encounter at one point or another, but it can be difficult to tell whether or not your gold is indeed fake. Many people each and every year go into their local jewellery store or pawn shop expecting a big payout for their “gold” only to be told it’s fake and not worth much at all. So how can you tell if your gold is real or not? Here’s a quick guide featuring some of the tell-tale signs that can help you spot fake gold.
Can you see the Hallmark?
One easy way to get a good idea of whether or not gold is fake is to look for a hallmark stamped into it. Almost all real gold is stamped with a hallmark that indicates the karat weight of the piece, like 10K or 14K. It can be found on different parts depending on the piece of jewellery, for bracelets and necklaces, check the clasp, and for gold rings, check the inner band. The purity of American-made gold is measured in karats, so there will likely be a stamp with a number followed by the letter “K” on most pieces of real gold. European gold is measured a little bit differently and its purity is expressed as a decimal, such as “.585” representing that the gold is 58.5% pure.
Does your Gold pass these Simple Tests?
Sink or float test– drop your gold into a cup or container of water and see whether or not it sinks. Real gold is a heavy metal and should sink to the bottom every time. If your gold piece floats, then it is definitely fake.
Magnet test- if your gold is attracted to a magnet, then it is fake. Real gold will not attract. If your piece is attracted to a magnet, it does not necessarily mean there is no gold in it at all, but it does mean the bulk of it is fake.
Size test- in the case of gold coins, this test is a simple way of spotting a fake. Gold investment coins must correspond to a certain size requirement with a specific diameter. If your coin’s diameter is different from this requirement, then it’s likely your coin is counterfeit.
Get an Expert Opinion
One of the best ways to determine whether or not your gold is fake is to take it to a reputable and established jeweller. An expert jeweller can spot counterfeit gold by using a special testing kit, and though they may charge a small fee, getting your gold tested with them might be your best bet in determining your gold’s authenticity. Unfortunately there are a number of dishonest jewellers out there, so it’s a good idea to do some research and make sure the establishment you take your gold to has a history of honesty.
By following this advice, you can much more easily determine whether or not your gold is real. Always remember to be sure before you decide to sell or buy gold!