Gold has been a valuable asset in civilized society for nearly as long as society has been around. For just as long, there have been counterfeit versions of the valuable metal. If you’ve got a gold piece on your hand and want to determine the true value, it will be important to know how to tell if gold is real or not.

Luckily, there are a few obvious giveaways when it comes to fake or imitation gold products. If you take the time to learn these, you should be able to sniff out the difference between real gold and a lame copy with little effort.

Ready to dive in? Read on and we’ll walk you through everything that you need to know.

Judging By Size and Weight

One of the easiest ways to determine whether the gold set in front of you is the real deal or not is to weigh it. This is what the professionals will do and you should do the same if you’re hoping to come to a sensible conclusion.

Gold is incredibly dense. It has many physical properties that are difficult to replicate. If one were to try to make a fake gold product, there’s a good chance it would be made of a material much less compact than true gold.

If you had a fake gold coin in front of you, whatever metal it would be made of would weigh less than the equivalent gold amount. Getting the weight of an equivalent confirmed gold piece and comparing it to the weight of the suspected fake should help you confirm your suspicions right away.

This method will be easier when it comes to gold coins than other types of fake gold. If you’ve determined your piece is real, you can refer to this helpful guide to find the worth.

The Magnet Test

An easy test you can perform at home is known simply as the magnet test. You’ll need to stop by your local hardware store and pick up a high strength magnet.

Bring your magnet near the gold item you’re investigating. If the material is attracted to the magnet, it is likely fake gold and not the real thing. It might have a small percentage of gold in it but it is not the real thing.

Most fake gold products are made from other metals that would be strongly attracted to a magnet. Gold, on the other hand, is a non-ferrous metal, which means it’s not attracted to the pull of a magnet.

If the item in question is drawn to the magnet but doesn’t stick, it might just be gold-plated, with a different metal underneath. This won’t be a foolproof test, as some other metals that might be used are also non-ferrous, but it’s a good way to reveal a large variety of counterfeits.

How To Tell If Gold is Real or Fake

It’s important to learn how to tell if gold is real or fake before you try dipping your foot into buying or selling the precious metal. The above tests can help make sure what you’ve got on your hands is the real deal.

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