Phylogenetic analyses based on mitochondrial DNA have yielded widely differing relationships among members of the arthropod lineage Arachnida, depending on the nucleotide coding schemes and models of evolution used. We enhanced taxonomic coverage within the Arachnida greatly by sequencing seven new arachnid mitochondrial genomes from five orders. We then used all 13 mitochondrial protein-coding genes from these genomes to evaluate patterns of nucleotide and amino acid biases. Our data show that two of the six orders of arachnids (spiders and scorpions) have experienced shifts in both nucleotide and amino acid usage in all their protein-coding genes, and that these biases mislead phylogeny reconstruction. These biases are most striking for the hydrophobic amino acids isoleucine and valine, which appear to have evolved asymmetrical exchanges in response to shifts in nucleotide composition. To improve phylogenetic accuracy based on amino acid differences, we tested two recoding methods: (1) removing all isoleucine and valine sites and (2) recoding amino acids based on their physiochemical properties. We find that these methods yield phylogenetic trees that are consistent in their support of ancient intraordinal divergences within the major arachnid lineages. Further refinement of amino acid recoding methods may help us better delineate interordinal relationships among these diverse organisms.