Inspired to "make living safer" for people like his late father, a Sumter man is on a mission to clean the community with an Ireland-based product uncommon in the U.S.
Guard-Ion Industries LLC founder Jesse Mullikin Jr. uses commercial and residential sanitizing solutions that he says eradicate 99% of all viruses, bacteria and mold with electrostatic treatments and UV light.
Electrostatic treatment is a way to disinfect a surface quickly and evenly with a solution. Mullikin said he's the first cleaning service in the South to use/distribute the product, which he is doing right out of Dalzell.
"The manufacturer of the chemical that I use, they have the first and only EPA-approved biofilm chemical," he said. "Most pathogens, viruses, bacteria and stuff, as they build up on the surface, they create a biofilm."
A biofilm is a film of bacteria that adheres to a surface. Mullikin said pathogens, viruses and bacteria build immunity to the cleaning chemicals when a biofilm forms.
However, PUREONE is a solution spray that penetrates the biofilm and cleans beyond the one-time spray using moisture in the air to continuously fight germs near the surface for a longer period of time. Mullikin said his spray typically lasts up to a month, depending on the size and foot traffic of a facility.
"There are a lot of different cleaners out there that can do the one-time treatment," Mullikin said, "but the PUREONE by EarthSafe was the first and only EPA-approved biofilm chemical that has that matrix cleaning."
Using PURETABS - effervescent disinfecting and sanitizing tablets - Mullikin cleans surfaces by dissolving them in deionized water to produce a treatment that meets the range of needs for every facility, such as low-level sanitization required for food-contact surfaces to powerful infection control for health care settings, according to his website.
Overall, the product is sustainable, quick and affordable.
Prices for the service vary based on facility size and number of sprays per month, but the average spray is $50 a month for anything up to 2,000 square feet, with a $50 flat rate to start the business, Mullikin said. The price doubles for every 2,000 square feet.
According to Mullikin, his electrostatic treatment also saves a business from shutting down its operations for the service. It only takes 30 minutes to an hour compared to other cleaning services that take 24 hours.
"Businesses don't actually have to shut down and lose 24 hours of their operating time," he said. "Not only are they saving money on the treatment, which is cheaper than others, but they're also not losing as much money on the downtime."
Only beginning his operations in April, Mullikin had only five businesses/organizations on a contract basis for a monthly or bimonthly cleaning, but he also does several one-time sprays for others in the community.
"We're small, and we're growing," Mullikin said.
Among those five under contract with Guard-Ion include Mullikin's brother, who owns the new downtown coffee shop, Brubakers Café and Bakery, and a Sumter church on Wesmark Boulevard.
"He comes into the church and sprays our entire facility," Venture Church Pastor Craig Bagwell said. "His PUREONE spray that he sprays is awesome. It doesn't leave a film, but it leaves a barrier. It keeps cleaning as you touch it."
Bagwell said he couldn't help but take on the cleaning service Guard-Ion offers because it was safe for the church's equipment, rooms and children's toys. He can really breathe in the difference.
"I've seen all kinds of chemicals and products across the board," Bagwell said. "Whenever he tested his product and did a demo for me, I saw that it not only killed as good as actually better than everything else I've seen, but it was very fresh and clean and didn't leave a residue. It was just an amazing product and the best that I've seen yet."
Bagwell also runs Brubaker's Mobile, a sister food truck of Brubaker's Café, and purchased UV-C light towers from Mullikin to clean the truck for his customers.
"We also do offer ultraviolet treatment as well," Mullikin said.
The UV-C towers come in various sizes and can be used to kill germs chemical free, according to Mullikin. It lessens the need to make repetitive heavy chemical applications and helps maintain an open, sanitary environment.
However, Mullikin said using ultraviolet light is more harmful to the human body and not as quick as the electrostatic spray. He typically uses the products for business offices that have items that cannot get damp.
Although Guard-Ion began its operations in April, the idea to create a cleaning service like this was inspired by Mullikin's father, who had a poor immune system battling cancer in the middle of a pandemic.
Mullikin was on a mission to help keep his father safe.
"It was a huge undertaking trying to figure out how to because most chemicals are hydrogen peroxide and ammonia chloride-based cleaners," he said. "There aren't any cleaners or disinfectants that have the elimination claim time for COVID, HIV, HEP-C and all this that is also gentle enough to be put on baby toys and play with it."
Although his father lost the battle to cancer in February, that didn't stop Mullikin from pursuing his business and finding a gentle, safe and sufficient product that could help others like his father.
"Knowing everything that my family had gone through, I wanted to be able to make life a little easier and safer for other people," Mullikin said. "Anything I can do to alleviate stress on them is what my goal was."
Nonetheless, he created Guard-Ion Industries LLC to help the community let their "guard down" and get back to a sense of normal.
"My motto is 'make living safer,' because that was the whole thing I was doing for my dad," Mullikin said. "Whatever I could do to make living safer because once you make everyday life a little safer, it gives a little more peace of mind."
For more information about Guard-Ion's products and services, visit www.guard-ion.earth or call (864) 872-0512.
More Articles to Read