24k gold is a type of gold that is found mostly in bullion items such as gold bars. 24K gold chains, rings, and earrings exist but they are not common. Below we'll provide more detail about this gold type and how much it can be worth.
What Is 24K Gold?
24k gold is pure gold- the highest level of purity. 24k refers to the gold's level of purity, and it means that your item is 24 karats out of a maximum of 24 karats. It's composed of 99.99% gold. 24k gold is the same as 9999 gold or 999 gold.
This type of gold is not common in jewelry because it's expensive and with no alloy content it's vulnerable to dents and scratches. So if you are looking to buy gold jewelery then there are better options to choose from. Gold is a softer metal which is why alloy is needed to make it more durable and scratch-resistant. For this reason 22k gold has become the standard for high purity gold jewelry.
How to Find Markings
Markings or hallmarks are easy to spot for any type of gold piece. You should clearly see 24k or the numbers 9999 or 999 engraved on the piece. On jewelry the number may be small and concealed, but it should still be visible.
You may encounter some other markings on your gold jewelry. For example, some pieces may be branded "24kP". This indicates that the item in question is plumb gold and is 24 karats exactly. An item labeled "G.P" is gold-plated. Similarly, jewelry labeled "G.F" is gold filled, which essentially means that it has a thicker layer of gold-plating.
The Value of Your 24K Gold
In order to get the melt value of your 24k gold piece, you'll need to multiply the total ounces of gold by the spot price of gold. We make this easy for you with our gold calculator. All you need to do is load up the calculator, select 24k from the purity dropdown box, enter the weight of your item, and then click the 'calculate' button.
It's always good to know the value of your gold item. If you were ever going to sell your item then you have a base price.
How to Identify Fakes
Fine gold items can be quite valuable. For that reason there are a lot of fakes on the market.
You need to remember that a fake gold item could look like real gold and even have the correct marking. Therefore you need to be careful when buying fine gold and you should know how to properly identify fake gold. The best testing method is the nitric acid test. We go over this method and others in our gold testing guide. Our guide features numerous techniques for both coins and generic gold items.
Gold items come in several different types of purities. Below we will review three similar alternatives to 24k gold.
23k gold is a less-common gold type found primarily in foreign jewelry. It has 4.1% less gold content.
22k gold is a common gold type for jewelry. It has 8.21% less gold content but it's more durable and it still shines brightly. The American gold eagle coins have this purity type.
21k gold is another less-common gold type found primarily in vintage jewelry. It has 12.41% less gold content.