How to check purity of gold jewellery?

Signs of purity of goldHow to check purity of gold jewellery?

Gold prices are coming down. Current gold prices are expected to stay between Rs 2,500 to Rs 2,600 per gram. Several investors are planning to buy physical gold or gold jewellery either for general usage or for long term investment. However, you might be getting doubts about the purity of gold sold by jewelers. You do not want to regret at later point of time after long term investment. While there are chemical methods to check the purity of gold, it cannot be verified by individuals. What are the easiest ways where you can check the purity of gold jewellery? What are the signs where you can easily identify the purity of gold? This is where hallmarking of gold jewellery come into the picture.

What is hallmarking of gold jewellery?

To protect the rights of consumers of gold, Govt. of India has made hallmarking of gold mandatory in India. If you buy gold biscuits / jewellery, this is made mandatory. Hallmarking is accurate determination and official recording of the proper content of precious metal in precious metal article like gold jewellery. Hence hallmarking is official marks used in many countries as a guarantee of purity or fitness of gold.

Also Read: What are the Top and Best Gold ETF's to invest in India?

Who does the hallmarking of gold jewellery?

Bureau of Indian standards specified certain facts about hallmarking of gold jewellery. BIS gives hallmarking which his similar to ISI mark. Whole jewellery is prepared by jeweler and it is hallmarked by the BIS. It is hallmarked by special labs called Assaying and Hallmarking centres after elaborate testing. Licensed BIS jewelers can also do this hallmarking. Cost of hallmarking is very low at Rs 25 per article. Hallmarking is made for all kinds of carat purity like 24 carats, 23 Carat, 22 Carat, 21 Carat, 18 Carat, 17 Carat, 14 Carat, 9 Carat and 8 Carat.

How to check the purity of gold?

While BIS does the hallmarking, you can quickly check the purity of the gold based on the following:

1) BIS Standard mark symbol: You would be able to see the following symbols in BIS standard gold jewellery. This indicates that this is official BIS standmark.

Piruty of gold-Hallmark symbol

2) Purity Carat Fitness: Purity carat of gold is indicated as follows:Purity of gold-Carat chart

With above, you can check the carat purity of gold.

3) Check for Assaying & Hallmarking Centre mark. This would look something like this.

Purity of gold-Assaying hallmark

4) Check for Year of Making

  • A means 2000
  • B means 2001
  • C means 2002
  • D means 2003
  • ….P means 2014

The above would help you to know in which year the jewellery is made. Generally, one would not buy gold jewellery, which is made more than 1 year back.

5) Jeweller mark / logo indicating their brand. This would help you to easily separate other jewellery with this one to know where you brought it.

Also Read: Are Gold Mutual Funds are better than Gold ETF's?

What are the precautions to be taken while check purity of gold and to avoid fraud?

Following are some of the precautions to be taken:

  • You should know that hallmarking is not instant. It takes time for testing for the purity of gold. If some jeweler indicates he can do instant hallmarking, don’t believe them.
  • You should know that KDM is not hallmarked Jewellery.
  • When you buy gold jewellery, ensure you insist on cash receipt. In case of any fraud from gold jeweler, this would be your main proof to get your money back.

A quick look at all these signs of purity in single picture can be seen below.

Purity of gold-overall

Conclusion: Above are some of the ways where you can check the purity of gold and see that you are buying original gold jewellery. These small  tips would really help when you intend to buy jewellery for either regular wear or for long term investment.

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How to check purity of gold jewellery

Suresh KP


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