What is Sterling Silver? | What is 925 Silver?

Sterling Silver Definition

Sterling Silver - (n) an alloy of 92.5% silver by weight and 7.5% by weight of other metals, typically copper to make .925 silver jewelry or silverware items harder and more resistant to warping. The sterling silver standard has a minimum fineness of 925 silver content.

925 Silver Definition

925 Silver - (n) silver industry parlance to describe sterling silver by its 92.5% minimum fineness. Mostly found in silverware and silver jewelry hardened with an additional 7.5% of copper (or other alloys) mixed in.


Sterling silver is prone to tarnishing when exposed to open air due to sulfide production.

See the time-lapse video below to see how 925 silver in silverware or sterling silverware tarnishes over time when exposed to open air.


Cleaning the tarnish or discoloring off of sterling silver and 925 silver pieces is a natural process and can be done using many everyday household items.

Collecting 925 silver is still common (925 silver demand in India remains robust).

In the following video, you can take a 360-degree view of one of the most extensive sterling silver vaults in the world located in London, England.


How pawn and silver coin shop owners test for sterling silver?

In the following video clip, Rick Harrison of the favorite TV show “Pawn Stars,” talks about what sterling silver markings mean, and how to test for 925 silver and weed out the sterling silver clad fakes that come into his store.


If you have an interest in silver investing, silver bullion buying and selling has now become commonplace around the world.

Be sure to pick up our free 21st Century Bullion Guide to learn more about silver and other precious metals.

Thank you for visiting us here at SD Bullion.