How To Tell If Silver Is Real: A Step-By-Step Guide

Tell If Silver Is Real

December 7th, 2021   |   Updated on June 25th, 2022

Silver shouldn’t take second place. American mines produced more than 87,000 kilograms of silver in August 2021. One troy ounce of silver is worth more than $24.

If you want to earn money quickly, you should consider investing in silver. But you shouldn’t buy all the silver you see. You need to know how to tell if silver is real.

What are the marks that suggest a silver object is legitimate? What are some basic tests you can run to determine legitimacy? What are some common objects that are passed off as silver ones?

Answer these questions and you can start making money off of silver in little time. Here is your quick guide.

Look For Authentication Hallmarks

The best silver coins will have small markings on them. The markings may be stamps or notches that the silversmith scratches into the coins. These hallmarks tell you how pure the silver is and who the silversmith was.

You may need a magnifying glass to find these marks. But if you cannot spot them, your silver investments are probably fake.

If you are not familiar with hallmarks, you should do some reading on them before you start buying silver. You can read this post and others on the subject.

Check The Polish

Silver requires frequent polishing to fend off rust. After you look for hallmarks, take a look at the surface of the object.

Take a tissue or a soft white cloth and rub it on your silver. You should notice black residue from rust on your cloth after a few seconds.

If you don’t notice residue, your metal is not rusting. This means that you have a different material entirely.

As you rub your object, you may notice flakes coming off. This usually means that your object has silver paint but no real silver in it.

Test If The Object Is Magnetic

Many people think that precious metals are magnetic. That is not true. Silver is not magnetic, but iron and nickel are.
Take out a small magnet and put it near your silver object.

If it sticks to the magnetic, it is not silver. It may have silver paint on it, but its core contains a far different material.

Smell The Silver

Silver does not give off a metallic odor. Waft the air around your silver object up to your nose.

If you smell metal or sulfur, you do not have a silver object. It may have traces of silver or a silver plate. But a smell means it is made with another kind of metal.

How To Tell If Silver Is Real

You must learn how to tell if silver is real. Coins, cups, and other important objects will contain hallmarks on them. If you can’t find stamps or etchings, the thing you bought isn’t real silver.

Polish your object off and see if there is any residue on it. You should also check for silver paint.

If your object is magnetic or smells of sulfur, it is not made of silver. It may have iron or nickel instead.

Don’t settle just for silver. Read guides on investing in metals by following our coverage.