Pressing the ‘up’ button increases the output by .1dB. Pressing the ‘down’ button decreases output by .1dB.
When doing a cfr session, you want to maximize the power output through all of the cellsite elements @42dBm. Throttling power back takes place in translations.
You didn’t mention using a SpecAn and you also said that you weren’t sure about the power going up or down when pressing the buttons on the CBR. I hope you are not simply excecuting a ft to measure the PL level. Those measurements are useless if the output power isn’t measured properly from the antenna port.