The best way to check is to have a buddy in the drivers seat, while you look/listen down below...
and have them turn the wheel back and forth.
On the Hoo Hah/steering issues, it will clunk if its wallowing out, etc....if you get a clunking noise, etc....you can trace it to its source...looking from the pitman arm down.
The other thing is the sway bar/brackets/bushings...they commonly get loose with wear as well. A visual inspection will typically reveal that, looking at the entire set-up from the LCA links, bar ends, and cross member brackets, etc.
If you suspect that the t-bar anchors are becoming unbolted, a visual inspection will typically reveal evidence of movement/wear at these points as well.
Jacking the front end up, and manually raising and lowering the tires, and shaking them in/out at the tops, and then at the fronts, can also help see if tie-rod ends or ball joints might be making noise as well (Cries for help).
If you have skid plates, sometimes they get jammed so as to pop in/out of position as the frame flexes over the road...visually, this can be hard to see unless you notice a wear mark where plates overlap, etc, or bolts are loose, etc.
Anyway - the above are decent starting points.
TJ's Build Thread
2001 Xterra SE, 2003 V6, 5 spd, Shrock Sliders, Bumpers and Skids, Warn 9.5xp Winch w/125' MasterPull II, OBA w/4Gal Tank & 4 CFM Compressor, Revolver Shackles, Deaver 3-Pack + Calmini 2-Pack + OEM Leaves, Bilstein 5150, SLR UCA, Diff Drop, 3" SL, 2" BL, 33x13.5/16 LTB's, Snorkel, Electric Fan Swap, etc...