Of course, if people got HAM radio operator licenses then we could use any one a dozen or more ham frequencies that have NO other traffic on them, and are much better tuned for your radios antenna. You lose four times the antenna efficiency or more by transmitting at 158 rather than 146 mhz if you are using the antenna that came with a 2M radio (which is generally a cheap antenna with poor bandwidth).
Most hand held radio antennas have 6 mhz bandwidth which puts even the lowest of the USHPA frequencies on the fringe of the antennas bandwidth. Whoever chose to use 158mhz had no clue about radios but since someone made a bad decision 20+ years ago the club is going to stick with it. Perhaps the people who think we should stay with 158mhz and DCS should fly PG wings from 20 years ago as well.
Twenty plus years ago when someone decided to use 158mhz, they didn't have this information, letting us know which frequencies are in use and which have little or no jabber on them.https://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?tab=reports&mid=26&rpt=1&os=0&s=freq
Getting a better antenna helps because the gain is better and the bandwidth is usually larger, but it is still tuned to 146mhz unless you buy a business band antenna (which is still tuned to 151mhz, not 158mhz). I know this is all math and science talk, but this is pretty basic radio operation and antenna tuning.
I tune my PG antenna for 154mhz so that it works better on the Lookout frequency and still is good at other sites that use the 151mhz USHPA frequencies.
Another reason for radio problems is that the cheapo antennas many radios come with often have a very thin, fragile antenna element (wire). If the antenna gets flexed by being stuffed in a harness the wire can break causing either an intermittent or permanent gap. This can even happen with better antennas, but it happens frequently with cheapo antennas. So before you either toss or buy a new radio, try swapping antennas with someone who's radio is working ok. You may just have a junk antenna.