Recently there has been a tremendous fall in the gold rate all over India as well as the world over. This in turn has encouraged more and more people to buy gold whether for investment or simply as jewelry. However, whenever you want to buy gold jewelry or solid gold, the first thing that you should ensure is the purity of the metal. This means that you should check how pure the gold that you are buying is. This presents an important question, that what is the method of checking the purity of gold. In order to protect the consumers in the market, the government of India has made it mandatory to get gold jewelry hallmarked in the country. This in turn not only helps in keeping control of the quality and determine the gold rate, but will also protect consumers of the metal from corruption among jewelers.
The Bureau of Indian Standards of BIS act, says that a hallmarking agency will certify the gold rate purity based on the Indian standards. In other words, the gold jewelry being sold in the Indian market will be first evaluated and tested in official centers of hallmarking and then will be certified that the metal used for making the jewelry or the bricks and bars conforms to the Indian and international standards of purity and fineness.
Check for BIS hallmark
The first thing that you should check is whether the jewelry has a BIS hallmark or not. You can check online to see what the hallmark symbol looks like. If any jewelry or gold bar has this symbol it means that it has been checked by the BIS and is certified for purity. At the same time, the jewelry store where you purchase the gold ornaments should also be BIS hallmarked.
Check for Grade of Purity
Different people prefer different levels of purity in gold. Then again in some cases it is not possible to use pure gold because it is very soft. This is the reason that when making diamond and gold jewelry, or gold jewelry with any other precious stones, 18 carat gold is used. The purity of the gold can be ascertained by the number inscribed on the piece of jewelry. This can be studies as below:
999 – 24 carat – pure gold and features the highest gold rate purity
958 – 23 carat
916 – 22 carat
875 – 21 carat
750 – 18 carat
708 – 17 carat
585 – 14 carat
417 – 10 carat
375 – 9 carat
333 – 8 carat
If you are buying gold for investment purposes then it is advisable to buy the gold inscribed with the number 999 which means pure 24 carat gold. Better gold rate purity will fetch you a better price in the market when you try to resell it.
The piece of jewelry or gold bar should carry the logo of the BIS authorizing hallmarking center where the jewelry or gold bar has been hallmarked. You can check on the internet to see the list of hallmarking centers across the country and their individual logos. It may be difficult to remember all the logos, but nowadays with internet access on mobile devices it should not be a major problem.
Year of Making
Along with the numbers there are also alphabets inscribed on the gold ornaments and this alphabetical system has been decided by the BIS. These alphabets represent the year in which the ornament has been hallmarked. For instance, the letter A denotes the year 2000, the letter J stands for 2008, N is for the year 2011 P for the year 2012 and so on. You can check this alphabetical system on the official website of the BIS.
Jewelers’ Identification Mark
All reputable and big jewelers always mark the jewelry made by them with their own identification mark. This will especially be helpful if you wish to return the jewelry to them. Usually you get a better price for gold jewelry if you resell it to the jewelry store from which it has been bought.